When I was 13, I told you: “I think you’re perfect,” and you cried in the girl’s bathroom for 20 minutes; I didn’t get that at all, but I knew that I never wanted to stop trying. And the first time I heard you sing, I could have sworn that the heavens opened up above me; I am not a religious person, but I never knew before that moment how an angel might sound if she sang. Before I was sure who I was, and before you knew who you might be, I taped a rose to your locker anonymously, and we never talk about it because you found out it was me and you hated me for not being a boy, but that was okay because I still thought you were perfect. But this is not a love poem; I am not writing this for you, from my heart, I am writing this to you, from my memories. Nothing changed until we went out separate ways and then, out of nowhere, we couldn’t get enough of each other. Like a meteor had suddenly fallen from the sky, nothing was as magnificent in my line of sight and it didn’t matter why was hurting, or why you were afraid, because gravity wouldn’t let us separate. The first time you told me I could hold you, I lay awake unable to move; I was afraid I’d do it wrong and you’d laugh and I’d be mortified! I just wanted to be perfect for you, the way you were perfect to me. And after that, oh how we danced: in the parking lot as the snowflakes fell. We were a million fingers intertwined, a hundred nights not wanting to say goodbye. It didn’t matter at all who I’d been, or where I was going, because for the moment I held everything in my hands… but this is not a love poem. I could have lived a thousand years in that summer you thought I was perfect, but the seasons changed and I didn’t change with them and you couldn’t understand where I’d gone. You stopped thinking I was perfect when I could no longer be strong and I stopped thinking you were perfect when you turned your words into arms. All our roots are grown together, so we can no longer survive apart, but that is not what it means to be in love; now, we’re just holding on so it won’t hurt. This is not a love poem, for our love is no longer a poem, it is just forgotten words upon a page. This is just a story now, that I’m writing just to get it out, and ours was just an ending I couldn’t change.

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