If you have taken this rubble for my past
raking through it for fragments you could sell
know that I long ago moved on
deeper into the heart of the matter

If you think you can grasp me, think again:
my story flows in more than one direction
a delta springing from the riverbed
with its five fingers spread

Adrienne Rich, “Delta,” Time’s Power: Poems 1985-1988 (W. W. Norton & Co., 1989)

To My Long-Ago Ex

Hi there.
It’s me.
I know it’s been a while
And you might not even
Remember me
But I’m
The girl you told she was

But if I was perfect
Why was it never enough?
You were always trying to
Change me
Into something I am not.

Maybe I am perfect but
I just wasn’t
Perfect for you.

I just wish
I had been good enough.

I put up with so much crap
Because you didn’t know how
To treat me right
All the time.

I cried too much
Sometimes every night
But I loved you.
If I’m honest,
I still love you.
I don’t think
I’ll ever completely stop.
There’s a piece of my heart
You took with you to Europe
When you stopped talking
And forgot me
And I may never ever get it back
Even though you’ve been home
For months.

Our story was one of extremes.
The good was
So so good
Like a drugless high
Of euphoria and promises
And the bad was
So so bad
Like your dislike of my anxiety
(I don’t fucking like it either, you know.)
And my black lipstick,
And like all my midnight tears.

I call you an asshole
Because it’s easier,
Because hearts forget
Far too easily
The wars they’ve been put through
And hearts forgive
Far too easily
Because they love
Even still.

But I can’t romanticize the past
Though I do.
I risk going back
And I shouldn’t.
I can’t text you
For fear of what would happen.

I’m a girl with daddy issues
And you’re a boy like my father.
I’m a thin tree
And you’re a hurricane
Shaking me loose.
It was a beautiful trainwreck and
A bad idea wrapped in shiny paper and possibility.

But you are a mistake
I could make over and over
And I try so hard
Not to.

How can I miss a boy who made me cry?
How can I still want you back sometimes?

Your name makes me cringe
And I don’t know what I would do
If I saw you again.

I need to put you from my mind
But I fear that may be impossible.

—  Words You’ll Never Read // Pt. 6 -To My Long-Ago Ex