We pull truths out of us
like magicians pulling foot upon foot
of rainbow scarves out of throats.
I gag on each knot, and your truths
string our past selves up by their necks,
push them off high rafters. Every day
I grieve for what I thought we were.
You can survive this, the therapist says.
It’s what people do, survive
the broken marriages, the deaths,
the things that almost kill us,
the message read in the purple sunsets
slipping under the horizon—we go to dinner.
Across the table, you eat obliviously,
and I watch your tongue’s
slow tango with rich food and fine wine.
I think of how it traced her birthmarks
and freckles, how it twisted into whispers
and moans, lashed out lies, insults and apologies.
Then I’m crying into my napkin,
and you are dumbfounded. On the way home,
I want to hear stories of the other women
again, I want to crawl into bed with them, taste
them, run my fingers through the tangles
in their hair. I want to forget
me. When you fuck me,
I lie still. I don’t know who to be
or who you are. None of this surprises
our therapist, but I’m in a constant state of awe:
The air outside is hazy with pollen,
the bees swarm the flowers after a hard rain,
and fragrance pervades everything.
I love it violently and it makes me ill.