Writing You Back

You would say that your skin
Was fallen leaves
As you sat, small as you could be
Looking out the window,
Rain painting teardrop shadows
Your hands gathered up to your lips
Like you didn’t want any more words to escape.

You’d get mad at me
For stealing them, your words
Because to me they were playthings
To be bent and twisted about
I couldn’t help it though
I am after all
Just a thief of words.

You thought I didn’t take you seriously
Saying “you’re stitching my breath to pages,
I can’t breathe spread out over corpses”
But I couldn’t understand
All I could hear was the pen scratching
You hated that sound,
Said it felt like ants under your skin
Itching and prickling.

Maybe I should have left a few alone
You stood in the doorway
Telling me you couldn’t even cry
I’d written all of your tears into deserts
But I don’t think I even looked up
Until you were gone
Now I just scribble down everything you ever said
Hoping I can write you back.


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