The first night we slept together, you cracked open my chest with your lips, thinking love would be inside. You tried to reach at my heart and massage the love out of it. But it wasn’t there. All my love for you was a fire in my stomach, a kind of nuclear fusion for the soul. This was a feast and I had come to dine on you.
But long before you ever wrapped your arms around me, we were deeply intertwined. When two celestial bodies orbit, they are constantly falling towards each other due to gravity. The only reason they avoid collision is because of their previous momentum always propelling them forward and away. I love that. We were always falling towards each other, for each other. And everything that we had ever been up to that point—every mask we wore, every scar that was handed to us, every human heart that had ever grazed us—gave us the momentum we needed to not collide, to stave off self-destruction.
We are born into this world with ravenous appetites. And it didn’t matter if we were naked or in a bookstore, I never stopped wanting to sink into you, to learn the map of your enigmatic mind, to explore the continents on your skin.
I don’t miss you but I remember you.
Occasionally, your name rolls off the tip of my tongue. Occasionally, it leaves my mouth through my parted lips and everyone seems to be having a hard time understanding why it does.
I am still allowed to pronounce your name because we held hands for too long. We walked upon sidewalks together and now I walk them alone. I kissed you at every corner and at every stoplight. We sat across from each other at tables in small coffee shops. In fact, I don’t think there is one single coffee shop that we didn’t visit together. You tore daffodils from the ground beneath your feet and you placed them between the knots in my hair.
So I am still allowed to pronounce your name because I loved you enough. I know I did. I let you write your name on the insides of my wrist. I let you leave your fingerprints and most of all, your footsteps.
I am allowed to remember you.
But that has never meant, I miss you.