We stacked sugar cubes to look like little-us statues, then
demolished them in our fists and crumbled them into your tea.
It was the melding of one relationship into another,
but it was his gleam that lit and refracted out of your irises,
The candles burned in tumblers like my mother handed me when my clumsiness arrived,
when she would call me a “son of gun” and call those milk glasses “bulletproof.”
I wondered when I had stopped being so explosive,
imagined the moment when my actions became only destructive,
I was no phoenix hiding behind your straight auburn locks,
waiting for a moment to emerge again from the shimmering gray of defeat.
No, my body littered the ground like little flicks from the end of a cigarette,
used up and tired and unable to be reborn,
These parts, fragmented, fought amongst each other to see who could reach you,
who could peel back your skin, rip you apart, torch your nerve endings.
Which finger could linger on your arm and scorch until
the mark would stay forever and you would stay scarred,
for every man to come after.
The conversation flickered, dimming with each breath,
so I paid our tab and our bodies roasted
in the dull heat of midnight as it glinted up from the pavement
And at the end of the night, it was still him you wanted to melt into,
and my love was still the love that would burn you alive.