Picture by Linzi on flickr.com.

We had a selfish six weeks together.

I wanted you to strip,
to corrupt yourself before me,
“tell me your darkest fears and mistakes”
and muddy the facades I thought you had
while clutching onto my own mask.
My dishonest attempts at sensitivity
and vulnerability.

Even when we came to the close,
I would rather die a cold and political death
than martyr my pride for emotions.
You were the only one I never let see cry.

How could I trust you to love the blue of my bruises
when you inflicted them on others?
You thought me as different than those girls
the ones I saw face the same fears and misery.

I thought maybe my loneliness could compliment loneliness,
that we could melt the ice around our hearts together:
I mistook your introversion for sadness.

They teach men to be strong in this country.
and that women can’t be, and can’t be loved — if they do not look like women.

Even when you ran your fingers through the shortness of my hair,
I wondered, if you could sense the scared girl underneath.

When you learn to love again after sexual assault, you have to be selfish.
You distance yourself from people, refuse to let them see your pain.

an art piece by Mark Aguhar:
“Who is worth my love, my strength, and my rage?”
Titled “Not You.”

I’m sorry you have to be my training wheels —
you swore you enjoyed me, but you don’t understand that I will be better:
stronger, happier, kinder, smarter than I was before.
It was never for you, but for everyone that comes after you.

We broke apart, so I could grow apart from you —
your beliefs founded upon a false persona — that somehow you were pulling me back, a lie, but was enough for me to make it a reality:
In the future, you will love me more
even though the both of us will never love each other again.

One day, I will find another lover who I do not have to be selfish with
who I will feel comfortable disrobing with, peeling away the mask,
who will massage my bruises without asking me why they are there
who will cause me to forget what pride is, and fall into their arms
and weep angry, passionate, and relieved tears into their skin.


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