we were all late nights, long talks,
our hearts so full of everything we
thought it would kill us someday
but we never broke, only grew.

we were missed curfews, tired eyes
drinking in sunrises, coasting
80 miles an hour down the back roads
going anywhere but home.

we were lipstick stains on
each other’s collarbones. no matter
how much it hurt, we were
always coming back for more.

we were endless summer, baby,
all heat and ache and want. we were
stars so bright they hurt your eyes,
so bright you couldn’t look away.

we were beautiful. we were young.
we loved each other breathlessly, deathlessly.
we had the whole damn world clenched
in our fists. we never let anything go.

—  A Love Letter to Seventeen on my Eighteenth Birthday by Auriel Haack