Not sure if I was going home
or leaving it
I lifted the candles to my nose
one after the other
found the night her mouth tasted like lake water lemonade
found the night I drank coke and whiskey and wrote about melting into the bathtub
found the night I turned the lights to half-mast
laid on the floor
and listened to a recording of her voice wash over my nose
like water that stings in the best way possible
wicks stiff and crumbling
aching to be burned

That day, I ached to burn
but it all ran through my fingers
sawdust under my fingernails
slipped the way days do
when filled with ways
to love people one final time
but instead, you prove that you’ve changed:
– say it to the mirror
– put chili flakes on your pizza
– wear the black dress you bought two years ago but never put on until just now

Not sure if I was going home
or leaving it
this home was a paint-smell relic
and exhibit that I walked through
with only my socks on
this one’s walls stopped clutching the posters
Jack and Meg White sat curled into each other
sleeping on my carpet
tape on their backs
this home was a square foot of ghost town
one hand of a woman
playing a dusty piano
and talking about how, when you squint,
nothing has changed all that much

4 thoughts on “Sawdust

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