I start a fire in the hearth and seat by it, cradling myself; warming thoughts of you that are almost running cold in my mind. In my heart. But I loved you, didn’t I? The flames entwine deliciously before my eyes and I envy and hate them at the same time. That used to be our bodies in sync, it used to be our rhythm. Slow, sweet, gentle thrusts; silent moans that made the nights glow; hungry, tongue-ful mouthful confessions; olive eyes, scarlet lips… Now I tear my mind away from the memory of your face. It is too painful, it is too sad.
I had been there the other day, watching you tear apart at the seams while she (mum) laid in peaceful pain. I saw you, differently. Raw, broken, shattered, different. I was afraid I didn’t know you anymore. Those eyes were not the same that ogled my breasts at night. Those lips were not the same that knew my body by name… it was maddening thinking about you like that. So maybe you needed something but that something was not me. I felt too un-enough to contain your pain. What were the right words or right things to do? Touch you? Stroke you? My head said “just be there”, but how? Every step I tried taking towards you took me farther away. I broke. I cried. I prayed. For you, for me, for us. You didn’t hear me, but I did. I wanted to be there; to be the heroine, the one that catches the grenade or throws herself in front of a train for you. But I didn’t know how.
So in your eyes, I ran away. And even now, I carry the guilt from the thoughts of me I mirror in your mind. I blooming ran away! Some say I never loved you. Some say I am selfish. Some think me evil and cast aspersions on me in their dark righteous minds. But the flames pressing together in luscious mirth, remind me of how I loved you; un-knowingly, intimately, invisibly. And that’s that.
© The Short Black Girl, 2016.