"Only those who still have hope can benefit from tears. When they finish, they feel better. But to those without hope, whose anguish is basic and permanent, no good comes from crying. Nothing changes for them. They usually know this, but still can’t help crying."
—from The Day of the Locust by Nathanael West
I am not the first person you loved.
You are not the first person I looked at with a mouthful of forevers.
We have both known loss like the sharp edges of a knife. We have both lived with lips more scar tissue than skin.
Our love came unannounced in the middle of the night.
Our love came when we’d given up on asking love to come.
I think that has to be part of its miracle.
This is how we heal.
I will kiss you like forgiveness. You will hold me like I’m hope. Our arms will bandage and we will press promises between us like flowers in a book. I will write sonnets to the salt of sweat on your skin. I will write novels to the scar of your nose. I will write a dictionary of all the words I have used trying to describe the way it feels to have finally, finally found you.
And I will not be afraid of your scars.
I know sometimes it’s still hard to let me see you in all your cracked perfection, but please know:
Whether it’s the days you burn more brilliant than the sun or the nights you collapse into my lap, your body broken into a thousand questions, you are the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen.
I will love you when you are a still day.
I will love you when you are a hurricane.
I know that you’ll leave me. It’s going to take you twelve months to realize that maybe this isn’t love.
You’re going to apologize for not loving me better, for not loving me at all and I can not promise that I will forgive you but I can promise that I will try.
I can tell you right now, that’s it going to wreck me and I can tell you right now that you’re going to stay longer than you should because you know I love you. But I don’t want you to stay knowing that I could never make you a better person. I don’t want you to stay knowing that you could never love me.
So leave right when you realize that I don’t make you happy. Yes, I might have trouble sleeping for months down the road but one day, I won’t think of you anymore and I hope that scares you, to know that you could love someone so much but yet , understand that you’re worth more than whatever little they had to give because that’s exactly what’s going to happen.
I’m going to get drunk off cheap vodka and I’m going to smoke cigarettes until something other than you makes my hands shake but one day, I will understand that the person we love the most is not often the one we get to spend the rest of our lives with and that’s okay. I will realize instead all the things you couldn’t do for me, all the things you didn’t do for me and that’s going to be the moment when I stop loving you.
You didn’t write me love letters and you didn’t take me home to meet your mother because although you knew she could love me you knew that it never meant that you would too. You couldn’t hold my hand in the backseat of my fathers car because you knew that he would think we were perfect together in spite that we never were. So it’s okay. It’s okay.
I know you’re going to leave me and I don’t want you to feel sorry for it. I’m going to be okay without you, I know it.
“Be like water making its way through cracks. Do not be assertive, but adjust to the object, and you shall find a way around or through it. If nothing within you stays rigid, outward things will disclose themselves.
Empty your mind, be formless. Shapeless, like water. If you put water into a cup, it becomes the cup. You put water into a bottle and it becomes the bottle. You put it in a teapot, it becomes the teapot. Now, water can flow or it can crash. Be water, my friend.”