THOSE WHO WERE BULLETS TO US

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One day you realize that there are people you will never see again. At least, not in the same way. There’s some sort of tragedy in that.

They say that every lover you ever take keeps a part of you and that when you finally meet the person you’re supposed to be with, you will no longer have the whole of yourself left to give. And I thought of all the pieces that you must have of me and how, if we ever see each other again, whether you will give them back or if you will taunt me with them, flare them out like playing cards only to tuck them under each arm and disappear. That would be fair, all of these pieces, they will probably look like you anyway.

Here’s something I haven’t told you.

You were sleeping. I stretched my arm out in front of me, fingers splayed out across the canvas of your skin, careful not to touch or wake. My phone read 6:45am. If the days before were any indication, you would be sleeping for at least another three and a half hours. Your eyes moved back and forth behind delicate eyelids that whispered Sleep and Slumber. I looked at you and thought This Will Not Last. I knew that then, and I know it now. Our days were numbered.

I haven’t been eating properly for the past four weeks. My medication has been left untouched, hidden somewhere between letters I can’t read and truths I can’t swallow. In the shower, my hands pull at hair that doesn’t stay – this has always been the first sign of defeat. My stomach is gnawing at my spine, and it’s a welcome longing. My mother reminds me to be careful, she notices that my face is sinking and my eyes are dull. The distaste I have for myself has spread so much so that, when I meet people who have similar personality traits, I hate them like a habit. I am alone in a body that cannot love me.

You called me beautiful for the last time while I sat defeated on your bed, hands in my lap, tears in my eyes. You said, “you’re still beautiful, even when you’re crying”.

You only call me beautiful in memories now, and those memories claw at the back of my head, even when I try to drown them, sometimes especially then. Whatever we are now, I still remember what we were. I suppose it’s okay to miss the people who were bullets to you. Because there are a million different ways to bleed, but you are by far my favourite.

And now you've washed me from your sheets, swept me off your floor and kissed me into the lips of other willing hearts. I am, again, nothing to you. But there are no floods in the ocean, my love. Of course I am fine.

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