Crescendo or What I choose to remember
The last time was unremarkable.
The last time with him was ordinary
in its duration, its position, its intensity.
That is to say it was one more time before
he was off to work. One more time being
that it was the second time that morning.
The first-time being everything the last
should have been. The first time that morning
was consumed starvation. Being that he made
my body forget gravity. The first-time being laid
gasping off the side of the mattress.
It was the culmination of months abandoning.
The synchronicity of his chest against my shoulder
blades. The last time he set me alter high
and drowning in his sweat. The last time he’d fuck
anyone else on that mattress. He left me in love
with college boy sheets and summer fans
in November. The last time was a muted sigh.
The first time being crescendo. Arms tangled
in thighs. He refused to have me exhale
on his behalf. Being that he made my body
forget about gravity.
To the Men who told me my Love was not enough
1. They told me with their hands
the first man I loved used his hands to pull down
my panties without asking
I had love him without question
his carpenter hands
rough against my abdomen
my five-year-old heart was
2. They told me with their mouths
the second man I loved used his mouth
—when I gave him my free forward,
my unrelenting, my wide-open
when his empty was filled
with the red vacuum of my sex
he mouthed “I still love her”
and the Her of me was vacated
3. They told me with their silence
the third man I loved used his tornadoed
soul against my earth-bed body for landing
then he pulled up his sleeve to his wrist
and wiped my name from his eyes,
rubbed my wetness from his now-landed
—took his relit fire and left
my heart, soot-thin
I will never be damsel enough
to be claimed victory by savior
the way he swoops down
in her destroyed
sword out and crowned
I am without tower
without step-mother plotting
I need lover like home
I need lover like foundation
under bare feet
Sarah Thursday runs a poetry website called CadenceCollective.net, co-hosts a monthly reading with G. Murray Thomas, and founded Sadie Girl Press as a way to help publish local and emerging poets. Her first full-length poetry collection, All the Tiny Anchors, and her newest CD/chapbook, How to Unexist, are available at SadieGirlPress.com. Find out about publication credits, events, and more on SarahThursday.com. Follow her on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.