106/365: Terrible Words About Love
We are quick to say terrible words
that make confinements of our hearts.
We have been taught well:
we say phrases like my one true love and the one I love,
as though we are so finite,
as though our stories are not ours but foretold
to make us actors who walk the stage,
as though love were this simple or this small,
or such a finite tool made for one who is simple and small,
to hit only one target, only one,
and then deliver no returns by some exterior accident,
as though love knows physical direction at all,
as though it can boomerang along physics' described lines,
as though love were not a thing that makes you every moment,
as though it is not the thing you become,
the force you deliver.
We think our terrible words are romantic,
that they make homes for our hearts,
that there is virtue in this conservation of power,
but these words are the walls and locks to keep us bound
for lovers who may or may not return for them.
These words lie that it is a virtue to remain quiet and broken
and waiting when we have been left,
lost without our destiny's fragile plan.
We pine as romanticized Rapunzels,
passively growing our hair,
waiting for the truth of our heart to present himself, to ask for us,
as though this truth were one person,
as though we are not an author in this theatre,
as though the heart in every chest is not a mad, willed thing,
as though it does not run with amoral abandon where it will.
There is no virtue in the insistence
that you are a tragic character in a broken story.
Love is not only so much and no more,
only for this and not for that,
a measured cup with a single source.
Unlocked, it will move on,
make a whore of you, a slut,
a wild bitch.
It will break things, and it will build.
Or you can fashion your heart into an empty box,
a seemingly uncomplicated metronome
that beats out time without meat,
a box that waits
and writes its losses,
an inverted pendulum
that sways against gravity and mocks
not now, not now.
I am writing one poem every day in 2016, and I am using the hashtag #365poems to document my progress.