When I wrote her love songs,
because they were
“Just that good.”
And I was falling
And when I wrote my heartbreak,
cracked stars open to peek inside
in search of some kind of light
in the darkness I was dipping into,
you called me
and we stayed up until midnight
talking about everything and everything.
The first poems I ever wrote
were about things I thought poetry was meant to be about.
I talked about love like roses
wilting in the maze I trapped myself in.
(I was an 11 year old who’d never seen a maze.)
and I wrote about sadness
of the wise and weary
lost in a world that pressed me too thin.
(And you read them all even if they didn’t always make sense.)
When you fell in love for the first time,
I wrote you an ode to love.
I was so happy
when you started writing poetry about your boyfriend too.
That was two years ago and I still write love poems
about how you look when you fit your hands together,
about how the light I’ve always seen within you
shines a little bit brighter
when he’s here too.
That doesn’t mean I don’t write about us too though
because when you say you’ve got two soulmates,
I can’t help but wholeheartedly agree.
And when we sat quietly in your car
after a bad day
(a bad month)
(a bad year),
listening to the breeze winding through
the long and empty streets of my neighborhood,
I wrote you love
because I never want you to feel alone
when darkness presses down on you.
I remember how addictive it can be
to take a sip of sadness and convince yourself
you can never taste again.
While our friends dropped like flies around us,
while your boyfriend fell apart from stress
and I fell apart because of how I was stitched together,
you cried alone because you’re so used to sorrow
being what you read about
But I’m here and I didn’t mean to make you think
that I was too far gone that I couldn’t piece myself together
enough for you too.
The latest poems I’ve written
were about things I think my life has always been about.
I see shadows in my stance.
I look back and I can trace the rises and dips
of an unrecognized mental illness I refused to acknowledge
intertwining with the words I wrote.
When I wrote you a sad song,
you always listened.
I’m here to hear your sad songs too.
I am writing recovery now.
For the both of us.
I’m writing hope and happiness
because I’m tired of both of us forgetting
that even on the darkest days,
the Sun is still there
and even in the smoggiest of cities,
the stars are still shining.
We both know
I’ve got a problem.
(Because I’ve found denial doesn’t cure disorders.)
We both know
you’ve got one too.
(Because when tragedy hits, sometimes depression bites too.)
I used to write of loneliness.
But even when I wrote that,
you read those too.
You’ve always been here,
crying and laughing and loving.
We’ve always been here,
living and breathing and surviving.
My darkest poems
are evidence that
we’ve made it through worse.
My brightest poems
are evidence that
better days are coming.
I’ll always be here for you,
writing and reading and loving.