Out of the Woods
I remember that last night at the airport, our last night and the first. Mouths and fingers sticky from soft serve, your thumb smearing chocolate on my cheek just so you had an excuse to wipe it off. Ice cream was still “cheating” to me then, eating anything pretty much was, and I pinched my wrist bones to reassure myself.
"Are you drunk?" you asked me.
I said no, but it would’ve been better if I was. Maybe I could’ve written it off as a momentary discretion, a weakness fueled by a spring that felt like summer and a bed that only smelled like myself.
Do you ever tell her about April? The month, not the girl, although the two are always the same.
I wonder how my life always ends up at this crux, sweaty hands and the vertigo of a decision already made. How I didn’t want you, but I wanted to take something, since he had taken so much from me. So much — a series of near-misses and voicemails and a spare shirt from the boss he ended up fucking. The shirt you were rubbing your knuckles against on my back. The way my father stared at me when I explained I had to see him again in order to give his toothbrush back.
"Baby girl," he told me, "if you give them what they want, they’ll never stay."