Bookmark #907

I believe I have forgotten the simplest thing in the world; I have forgotten to confess. Perhaps it was the impossibility, the mountains I scaled for years on end, or the touch-and-go of modern love that let me down—the meeting and forgetting, and meeting and forgetting, and meeting and forgetting. Perhaps it was that and nothing else. Or maybe it was being told often how I did it wrong, or poorly, that there was a right and correct way to tell someone you loved them. Maybe it was that, and now, like a child who is reprimanded for who they are turns to a quiet corner and grows into a quiet adult, like that, my silence is learned. So much I keep to myself—to think all the things I never tell others, to think all the times I have looked at someone wanting to say the three words, which, in what seems like a different life, came so easily to me, and keeping mum, uttering no semblance of speech, to think of all the missed moments, to think of all the missed chances, to think of the eager eyes on me, looking within me as if they were saying yes before I asked a question, and the eyes that begged me, “Say it, say it, what is stopping you? Why would you not say it? This is the only chance we have. If you do not say it now, we may never get another chance,” and me looking away and looking for a way to leave the room.

Yes, my heart was broken once, but lately, and by lately, I mean as far as memory would take me, I have broken it myself. I have suffocated it under a pillow. I have stabbed it in the dark. I have thrown it like you throw some absurd piece of decoration you got from overseas during an argument. I have dropped it like a bottle of wine you knock down when you are too drunk. I have starved it in a cage and acted surprised like a jailer that the prisoner did not live through the night. I have forbidden it from speaking, and is that not the same as dying? I have broken my own heart, and I have done it correctly. I have done it as they taught me. I have kept it all to myself. My heart has withered like a rose never watered. A petal or two remain, perhaps. But I wonder, at what point does a flower stop looking like one? Your guess is as good as mine.

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