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Bend, Bend, Break

Lauren Kizi-Ann Alleyne

               For A, again

Yesterday, for the first time in months,
   we spoke. When I asked how you were,
you said wonderful: a fancy new job;
   the brand new house; the dog; the boy-
friend, still there. We’d even planned
   a visit, in October perhaps— we’d dance
like we did before words became clumsy
   between us. You didn’t mention the ring,
his flashy, romantic proposal, your trip home
   to share the good news, the church wedding
your mother would have started planning.
   You spoke instead of your sister’s new baby—
his eyes, dark as yours; his toothless smile
   that melted you into loopy, adoring puddles.
Of course, I should have known then.
   But charged with the audacity of hope, I was
glowing with the image of our last dance,
   so frantic and dreamy I shiver at the memory
still. As the nail of each juicy detail pierced
   through a friend’s chatter, I remembered, too
why always it was so painful to love you:
   you wanted so badly to let me, but you couldn’t
love me back or release my foolish heart.

Lauren Kizi-Ann Alleyne

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