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It was your graduation party.
I remember pulling up in my used car,
Taking in the mass of luxury vehicles,
Lining your street.
Each one went up in value,
The closer they got to your house.
“I’m out of my league”
I thought.
But I guess I knew before,
I arrived.
You said you wanted me there,
The reason why,
was questionable.
Told me I helped you get through school,
With my minor edits to your essays,
And the occasional last minute ride
To class.
Really, it was all you.
Always said you were smarter
Than you gave yourself
Credit for.
You sought knowledge,
Unlike the others I had known,
Whom thought they
Had it all figured out.
You are not like them…
It was hell to be there though,
With your family, your new lover,
Whom I don’t remember,
He didn’t last long though.
Then there was me,
The old baggage.
My gift to you was our favorite wine,
After I explained its history,
A couple years before,
On your birthday.
I remember you were fascinated by it.
That smile you showed then was,
Intoxicating,
More so than the wine itself.
My heart has been
Hopeless since then.
I didn’t want to stay
For the bottle opening,
But you insisted.
I felt a pain like nothing
before or since.
It wasn’t just the sickness,
Slowly taking over my body.
That was something else
Entirely.
But this pain was formidable
Enough that I gulped my glass
Of stars
Like an alcoholic
After the cork popped.
Then I made my escape.
Said I didn’t feel well.
It was the truth.
Not long after,
My mom rushed me to
The emergency room:
Atrial fibrillation,
Among other things.
I was almost grateful,
If I’m honest.
It was a good reason to
Stay away.
And so I did.
I healed up nicely,
My mind even felt brand new.
Only took a few
years.
But you didn’t forget me,
It seemed.
And so the cycle renewed.
It didn’t take long,
For those old embers to reignite,
The rusted furnace of
my soul,
At a dinner you arranged
For us, and oddly, your mother.
She didn’t help the situation:
When you excused yourself
To freshen up,
Your mother told me she,
Wished you and I got married,
Because apparently,
You spoke mighty highly
Of me,
Quite often.
Ain’t that a hoot?
Didn’t know what to say,
A timid “Thank you?”
Is all that came out.
So I concluded that
Our relationship,
If that’s an appropriate term,
Wasn’t ending anytime soon,
And there was no point in
Running away.