The End of Free Love
And wasn’t the drunkest mania we’d ever caught
like a bad crush
on merlot: days wrapped in wash-dulled sheets, no matter
the hundred miles
between our cities, their factories like monuments to folly,
producing only smoke.
It didn’t matter that you wanted us to fight in bed,
beyond temporary wounds and into permanence; that I was
unable to admit
reluctance for the mornings I couldn’t raise my left arm
the memory of your teeth a ring around my clavicle,
a familiar pattern
surfacing. And weren’t our complicities like a remedy
for love, absolution
from the butcher’s work those memories would exact? Our bodies
weren’t built to last.
The elaborate mythologies we’d bury in each other
wouldn’t stay put,
rising as bruises, as ravenous ghosts, as inadequate courtesies.
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