Sep 04


"I'd follow you to the ends of the world," I used to say, as cliché and laughable as any flat-Earther. 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.