You’ll Hold the Bottle Before I Can Hold You

You’ll Hold the Bottle Before I Can Hold You

I sent you a message
in a bottle,
for a moment I feared
it would crash
against the rocks
to lie broken
and splintered
until the waves
carried it all away

but my aim was true,
it sailed
through the same sky
we share
and landed
in the sea
that would lead me
to you

the message reads:

I love you

which is all
I need you
to know

I tell myself
we are not

How Long Will You Be Staying?

How Long Will You Be Staying?

between midair
and the crash

between the thump
and the skip

between the intake
and the exhale

when my mind
is silent
these are the places
I find you

how long
have you been

how long have you
been hidden
among the biting things
so hard
and so loud?

in these places
you exist
a hush
between shouts

You Called it a Crutch

You Called it a Crutch

I told you everything
about when I was little

about the closet,
the mountain,
and that look
he’d get in his eyes
right before
he’d show me
big and mean

every secret
I had hidden away
under the thickest parts
of my skin
came crawling out
to curl up in
your lap

you said
that I lean too heavily
on the broken
and not enough
on stable surfaces
like your shoulders

years later,
I know
you were right
because I have learned
these shoulders
were always strong enough
to hold the world up
without the aid
of yours