five

happy five years, love.
we made it. 
somehow, on paper,
we made it,
and on this day, i'm out
with someone else
who listens to me
and hears what i say
and hears what i mean
and doesn't infer a silent rebuke.

we made it five years,
and if money's enough
we won't make it six. 
what do we have
to show for this mix?
the child who screams out my name
as i'm trying to rest?
the child you put to death in your head?
what head do you live in,
you sick child (too)?

i loved you and wanted
to love you, my dear,
and the hardest part was
realizing i had to deny
not only my own wishes
but also yours, love.
i had to say no because yes wasn't right.
my overtly optimist self thought it might
but you didn't ruin your last chance,
you are ruining it. now.

your warm body pressed against mine,
i remember.
i gasp and i cave and i shake
with the tears,
with the memories i'll have of you, dear
of the you
i imagined existed somewhere.
i think it still does,
but whether or not,
the choosing is yours.

who else will invest
in this child of ours?
i thought you would but it seems
you will not.
you're giving him less
than your parents gave you.
or maybe, it's more, dare i say it?
at least
you are letting him go to be loved
as i can.

who else will invest
in loving me, too?
i thought it was you but it seems
you will not.
or maybe did not, because what
kind of joke
were these five years i waited
grasping for straws, and looking
and waiting and hoping for you.
well, that was a waste.

i can't see a way
to get out of this dark.
don't flatter yourself,
it isn't for you.
i hoped you might be there,
my person, my friend,
but you're not, so depression is mine
to battle alone.
peace out, darling, and fight yours well, too.
be happy, my love, if you can.

the half-life of love
should be 2019.
by then i'll stop crying and screaming each day
as i fight all the memories
and mealtimes and budgets
assignments and weight loss.
the loneliness, job search, and school
that i'll do will one day resolve
and i'll be happy, too.
i'm happier now than when i was with you.