After taste

By Shirley Liriano ’25

My brain recorded the rhythm of your heart 

It replays it like a broken record 

I try to change the station  

But the tune still lingers 

I wrap myself in covers 

Wishing to replicate your arms 

They’re not tight enough and not warm enough 

Not firm enough and not gentle enough  

They were my home 

Were. 

I am homeless now 

I could draw the map in your hands 

I wish I could travel along them once again 

I try to remember back 

My fingers running through your curls 

Playing with the ringlets  

Drawing out the shape of your eyes 

Your nose 

Your lips 

Your beard. 

I hope you remember, 

Don’t wear your hair wet or you’ll get sick 

Don’t trim your nails too short or you’ll bleed 

Don’t sleep in that position or your neck will hurt 

Don’t hug your pillow too tight, 

I’ll envy it. 

Your eyes were always too big for you anyway, 

You never got to see the chemistry in us. 

I used to stare at you as you slept 

Making sure the world outside didn’t disturb you. 

In the bubble surrounding us 

There were always words left unsaid. 

Now all I have is the ghost of what once was 

A cold bed 

And empty hands. 

I miss hearing your laughter 

Gradually get louder 

The way your dimples slowly appeared as I dragged on the joke.  

You always put on a tough persona, 

But I know how gentle your heart is. 

I know the scars that you never mention  

I hope you find someone to hold you as you let out your silent cry 

The battle you’ll never acknowledge to others. 

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