Because I have a wandering heart that is always three
steps in front of my head, urging it to follow.
Because I close my eyes in the shower and hear
a waterfall, an ocean, a last gasp for air.
Because I have no secrets-
just pain, categorized and filed away in alphabetical order.
Because I know the proper way to nod at a police officer
when bailing out a loved one,
how to moan in a way that both my
lovers and husbands can enjoy,
and how to convince my friends
that the gurgling in my stomach
isn’t my passion berating me for wearing a mask.
Because I have a spine like a roadway,
arms like clock towers,
and fantasize about cities,
not others’ arms when you hold me.
Because all anybody wants to hear is
“YOU’RE ALIVE YOU’RE ALIVE”,
even if their emotionless face says otherwise while they
board the bus or pay for coffee,
and I understand this, I love them for this,
even when I am unable to love myself.
Because I have spent my life being told I am quiet,
even when I think I am doing a good job
of smiling and holding a conversation like any other
person would do.
Because when I look at my reflection,
I am either apathetic from having seen it so much,
or in complete awe that I am a living breathing thing
who is able to write and talk
and cannot understand why we don’t all break down
every so often and gawk at each other’s
wonderful moving machinery on the sidewalk.
Because, since my childhood, I have grown
anxious and teary-eyed
just by thinking about
the whole mess of being alive
and how beautiful it is,
how strange it is,
how much it aches simply to “be.”
Because I am struggling as much as you are
and know that dealing with being alive sometimes means
holding each other, falling asleep together,
showing up at your door at 1 a.m. with a bottle of wine
and plans to run through the streets,
taking trips for fun,
fucking, making love, staying up late,
or going home early,
and all of these things are