Unrequited Gaze

How do we speak to each other?

How do words become a universal language?

How do we explain ourselves if we can never speak for each other?

 

A gentle kiss, quickening, deepening before its lost,

a warm smile but a whispered laugh.

A heart so light but a body so tired.

You unfurl for me, a bud springing open on the morning breeze,

palms open and eyes exploring,

so fragile yet so terrifyingly strong

it blinds me,

it shakes me,

it unearths the roots i worked to bury for myself,

it wounds me to falter before you.

 

You bare your soul,

a mirror uncovered despite the dust in the air.

it stands before me,

I can see myself stripped before you too.

you allow the light to drip down,

bathe you in vulnerability,

and that is a strength I can only look at in wonder.

inspiring.

admirable.

too brilliant it hurts to be the one to shatter your glass.

 

You feel me trace

your face,

fingers graze along your lines,

leaving cracks where I touch.

I know i’ll never open myself to you.

I know i’ll never unfurl like you have, because

I’m

frightened.

I don’t know what to expect.

of you.

of me.

 

I feel the longing warm the glass.

you want me

but i can’t provide.

I can provide for others,

who pierce my skin, eagerly fumble with my clothes,

press against me fiercely to absorb what they need.

but for you i feel too adequate,

too humble,

I know i do not crave your touch,

I feel

in a cavern where i safe-keep my heart, my feelings;

that I can provide only what a friend might offer,

only insight and best wishes.

I cannot feel like perfection bundled in your arms,

because

I feel

my being beat against my walls

screaming that it isn’t my place to be there

in your arms.

 

I cannot linger in your light,

i don’t want to trail my dark ink,

thick and clotted,

across that golden shine.

I only want comfort for us.

I only want that burst of sunshine

dripping gold and gems and diamonds,

of when we meet and explore the people who were meant to hold us,

embrace us,

coat us and touch us, whisper and laugh and cry before our outstretched arms to one another.

to be the lovers to us that we desire.

to be the safest

hollow,

to be the safest shelter we could ever find amid a burning field.

the people we were designed to allow to pick apart the cobwebs, the bruises, the joy and the

darkness we all carry inside.

 

I want to feel that.

I don’t want to see you break into pieces at my feet.

I don’t want to see shards of something so beautiful.

 

we want to be worshipped.

to feel we could walk on broken glass so long as

you were there to hold us tight at the end of the road,

to make us smile without even thinking

to make us burst without reasoning to.

to not even need words, explanations to others, gestures,

disguises.

to not even need to think about how we look.

but I don’t think my love will kneel before you and worship the thought of holding you.

does that make me horrible?

why do I feel like I’m burning?

 

can you belong to someone while you wait to hopefully,

truly,

openly,

decidedly belong to another? the one you need to belong to.

Is it cruel to wait and play and tease,

knowing this,

or is it crueler still to break them open?

to make them fall away from you, to fear you, to make them taste the sour tang

of you

instead of dragging them behind you in chains they want to bare.

How do you know all this?

or are you simply deceiving yourself?

 

where are you?

where am I?

Cold, damp, broken surf washing over my feet.

salted like tears.

Except I know they are mine.

I know you are still that beautiful golden mirror,

I keep

in my cavern

tucked away.

I know you stay behind a dusty, dirty sheet.

but right now I need to turn from this place

and

let

you

go.

free.

please, release yourself from me

and be free.

 

*Art by unknown student artist- “Unrequited”

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