Sep 04

Mudpyre

"I'd follow you to the ends of the world," I used to say, as cliché and laughable as the next seismic prophet. But, too, I'd ask myself, Have we already reached the edge? Are we peering over? Is now the time to tie a rope around my ankles, just in case? Humus would squelch like hummus into the pads of my feet, a breathable, tactile quenching, yet unsteady beneath me and susceptible to the shifts of china plates.

"That's alright," I began to say instead. "I love you roundly then, overlapping, repeating, growing in haphazard divots and bulges – a rubber band ball with a tight, bunched, squiggly nucleus."

You smiled; so did I. What a lovely thought. I would reach out to feel our layers, stretched taut and tearing in primary colors left by the paper delivery boy. I circled over myself and over you a hundred thousand times, quantifying the quality of our length as it spanned the whole, the quality of our frozen Marie Callender, of 3.14% of our conscious lives together. I plugged our formulas into an old Texas Instrument, just to watch our mensal lines loop and flirt and kiss but never intersect.

When I drift off now, we're eating a slice of flowerless lemon meringue with a shared fork passed from lip to lip. We've been blow-torched, stiffened wavelike into fluffed, sugary peaks, while with the quietly bubbling blackness of marshmallows forgotten and tilted too far into the campfire embers.

I regraph, and I regraft.

I remind myself that I have solidified since, on my own – whisked from heavy-creamy indulgence, in you, into unspreadable butter on a two-scarf winter's day. Unlike the brittle exteriors of a fresh organic dozen, I cannot be cracked over the head with a tarnished utensil. My crust does not crumble with the invasion of your prongs, and I no longer consent to being devoured.