Elizabeth de Leon
We found each other’s hearts: opened them up and made them home.
Stretched our legs, rested them on the coffee table, made our bed and laid in it.
Pushed out the walls. Punched holes for air. Let the sun in.
Let the dust gather.
(It gets crowded when you move in somewhere meant for constant renovation).
Hopes and dreams, stapled up against the walls of each chamber.
Cuts and broken pieces mended by clear duct tape.
You pretend they’re not there.
But move out day arrives, furniture never used left behind,
and the scratches on the floor where we left them untouched.
You took our hopes and dreams with you,
unhooked all the pictures on our walls,
but left the nails.
So I change the bed sheets, wash off our days and nights,
vacuum the rug and wipe away the dust.
Now I watch you walk out the door I unlocked for you
and down the street we paved.
packed both sets of keys and then lost them on the train.
left the room cold, so that my muscles would ache the same way
The ghosts of your routines still floating around,
they keep me awake and light up
You call them away. You move out.
Now someone took your side of the room,
responding to a sign
I didn’t remember I posted.
They sweep up my mistakes;
call the stretch marks you made tiger stripes.
The dust doesn’t collect.
Sutures up the rips and the tears.
Disinfects the cuts from the sharp edges of your words,
ices the bruises from bumping into your jaded desires.
They fill your side of the bed,
hold me from falling out my favorite window.
I change the lock
and make a new set of keys.
Keys are exchanged but still their door is always open,
you scarred mine shut.
So I unhinged the door,
pulled it off the frame
let them walk in.
Now I have a toothbrush in their mind and a drawer in their atrium.
We live in each other.
There is no move out day.