When I fell in love with you I lost my appetite for seven days.
My arms and legs ached, dully, tenderly. Along my throat, and beside my breasts,
lymph, oval-shaped, milky white, swelled like new peaches: Emotion, a pathology, pathos of.
The needs of a body silenced by the greed of the soul; my senses so changed
just walking to the convenience store in the suburbs I smelled the sea.

You’ve never even touched me. What would I do if you did —
Every nerve ending would dissolve into blossom.
The little death darkening my blood to hematite.
The largeness of love, the demands it places on pride,
would either cure or impoverish me permanently.
I don’t know if I could survive that fire.

This feeling has never been gentle to me, and fear lies
like a fragile gem in my skeleton: too tremulous
to touch, a breath away from rupturing
into a cloud of gold. The mortality of love,
its half-life a night in Pyrrhic, pellucid springtime,
is a lesson I have learned over and over again,
but never managed to commit to memory.

What does it even matter. Oh, it is not as though
I would dare think of forever. But I do
still remember the Yamanote line at six in the morning,
the train hanging suspended by a single thread
as I put my hand on your shoulder. The purity of
that instant like heroin. Like Mount Sinai.
My heart so changed when the doors opened there was lavender filling the air.


  • This is the most beautiful thing I have read in such a long time. Writing about love without being cliche feels impossible but you’ve done, and beautifully. Please post more, I miss reading your work.

    Em edit: Thank you so much. Your comments are always so uncommonly kind and thoughtful, and I appreciate them greatly. Take care, wherever you are.

  • this is incredible.

    Em edit: Erin, I truly cannot believe you still check up on this blog after months of inactivity on my part…thanks so much. And thank you for your gracious comments, as always.

  • Gorgeous! gorgeous! gutting, and gorgeous!

    Em edit: KYLIE!! It’s really good to see you around these (digital, Internet) parts! Hope all is well with you! And thanks for your lovely comment 🙂

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