This is one of my “weird” poems from about a year ago, which I’m not 100% sure about. There are things I love about it, and things I don’t, things that I think work and things that don’t quite hit the mark. But here it is anyway, the way it came together. At the very least, it has value because I tried something different, and got a little writing practice out of it.
I want you to linger on my mouth like curry goat
slight spice tingle on my tongue, turmeric grease around my lips, sauce grit in the grooves of my gums, strings of flesh still stuck in my teeth hours later.
I want to smell you on my fingertips after three handwashes and a shower, the way spices lodge their scents into fingerprints, invisibly pungent, impossible to ignore.
I want you to fill me up like ground provisions,
breadfruit, sweet potato, dasheen, plantain,
sitting heavy and comfortable in my belly, making me feel loved and whole and at home.
I want you to make me wince with pleasure-pain like the Scotch Bonnet at the top of the rice and peas, my lips red and wet and plump with heat.
I want you to quench my thirst for love like ice-cold coconut water on a Sunday at the beach, dripping down my chin and into my soul.
All my flaws are flames now, drawing your moth wings in.
Your eyes dance when they see me.
You beg me to tell you more.
You say I have soft hair and a nice soul.
I can’t think of a better compliment.
I folded myself away like winter sweaters in April to love you like you’d never been loved.
I poured it into your cork-stoppered heart relentlessly, watching it splash back on my feet but refusing to give up.
I loved you.
He’s Clapton and coffee and old yellowed pages.
He’s sheet music and apple pie with vanilla from a pint.
He’s steaming showers and bars of Old Spice.
He’s dark beer foam and hazelnut comfort.
He’s whiskey and olives and ink-stained palms.
He’s worn hardwood floors and hot sheets out of the dryer.
He’s Thai food and stacks of stationery and a new pack of pens.
He’s watercolours and poems and lazy Sunday brunch.
He’s long drives and new places and thoughtful conversation.
He’s warm hands and silky hair and a strong heartbeat.
He’s thunderstorms and shooting stars and freshly fallen snow.
He’s effortless ease and loose laughter and perfect possibility.
He’s déjà vu.
Knight in shining armour – silver plate
riding a donkey decoy.
Chipped smile, white veneer, and eyes of grey ice,
faux bravado rock ’n’ roll.
Deception, thick like the beard he hides behind, slips through fingers and over hands like silk – smooth hands, no jagged grooves to snag lies.
Chameleon, a leather jacket of many colours,
change to match me, change to match her,
change to match.
Minimize her. Minimize what you felt.
Minimize what was, what could have been.
All because you can’t admit
she was too deep, too real, too much
You text me something funny
and laughter bubbles up and out of my lips and I remember joy.
And then pinprick tears make the bubbles pop
to reveal how much I miss you.