Poem: Half Empty

She always asked me to write poems for her.
And songs; and prose.
I never did, I could never get myself to do that.
She thought that I could not see the look on her face,
when I let go of her hand outside of four walls.
In that moment of forced betrayal, she ceased to look like herself.
Yet looked exactly as she would in several similar moments.

I refrained from telling her what she was to me,
because I was scared of the repercussions.
I thought that negativity was the repercussion,
until I finally saw the real one.
“I’m your dirty secret, just say it!” she would scream amidst arguments,
told me that she didn’t wish the same for me.
I thought she meant being the secret,
until I realized what she really meant.

The brown lipstick mostly on her lips was called ‘Plath’,
which rings in my ears since I have realized the name’s similarities with her path.
The playlists she made and songs she composed for me would melt all of me,
as I would under her touch.
She would say “I’ll be back” whenever she left,
until one day, when she didn’t and I didn’t notice.

If I could, I promise I would shower her with everything she ever asked for.
Hold her hand when the woman from across the street stared at us,
hold her face when she shivered in my arms.
Not hurriedly wipe the brown off my lips when in public,
throw away the shame that would overtake my soul and drown hers.
Tell her that I’d wait for her the next day,
hold her pieces while she glued them one by one.

I’d hold a rainbow above us, one decorated with mistletoes,
and kiss her until she would pull away to make a joke.
Can somebody tell her that I was never ashamed of her?
she was a breath of love amidst phobia and I wanted to protect us.
I’d send her the journals I filled, solely with all that I felt for her,
and write everything in my head, read it out to her from a stage.

But I’m afraid if I write her a poem now,
it will sound too much like the suicide letter she left behind.
Signed with her pen name, because as they carried her to her grave,
she carried the secrets that crushed her heart.

This story was about: Gender Identities Lesbianism Sexuality

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Eishita (they/she) is a writer and student of English Literature at Delhi University. They write about queer culture, politics and film. Most of their time is spent on gushing over queer couples in cinema.
Eishita NA

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