I’ve been working on the below poem for a few days now. I know it’ll never be finished, not really. Feelings change, I’ll change. But for now, this represents how I feel about romance. That no matter what happens, a minute sense of innocence and hope is still there, shrugging as Atlas does—the weight of love like the weight of the world.
written by Alexa L.
It starts with a break:
and when you realize you’re
you put yourself back together with the life equivalent
of super glue
(except you get a little on your fingers,
which probably won’t come off for days).
And then you’re single.
But when you talk about it,
you’ll have to elaborate.
because when you say you’re single,
you could be saying you’re lonely,
That you’re happy.
That you have some guy on the side,
but you’re single
just for the night.
That you’ve never dated.
That you date too much.
Or that you’re broken,
the boy yelling “Opa!” as he smashes your heart to the floor
(but at least there’s dancing).
Being that single girl, though,
the girl with the plate-heart;
being that girl is hardest.
Not because you’re broken
(the glue dries quickly, remember the fingers)
but you’ve forgotten how to be you
You’ve forgotten how to go solo,
a solo cup.
This is just you, babe.
You talk, maybe he’ll listen.
But remember everything is new from here,
your comfort zone, decimated.
I want to blame this condition
on being post-breakup,
because forgetting how to date is both embarrassing
and totally not your fault.
oh my god, do you try,
to understand the process.
But the problem with forgetting how to date,
and having “experience” is this:
you compare this guy to the bad one
and then blame the new guy for not
being as good as the old guy was
when he made you happy.
awkward phone call,
gleaning interest from
“Yea, well, that’s cool.
It could be like,
a date or something.”
Maybe it should feel like when you’re 16,
when you meet at the movies
and hold hands in the theater
and you make out
but probably not
because you’re afraid
you kiss like
Maybe it should feel like you’re floating,
fishing for something to fill the little void
the tiny, tiny space
filled with planetary systems and Milky Ways
of I miss yous and please don’t gos.
Maybe it should feel like nothing.
Maybe I’ll try my hand at online dating
(OK Stupid, Plenty of Sea)
and write something about how
my amazingness will amaze you,
how hitting single status
isn’t hitting rock bottom.
Or maybe it is.
The worst though, is the starting over.
And the fact that though the plate is smashed,
it doesn’t mean the pieces aren’t still there
pulsing with love,