If I can’t have the boy, at least I can have his clothes.
They leave their sweaters, their jackets, their blue jeans draped
over my bed like petals, filling the bathtub, rising to the surface
of the water like buoys. My therapist once pontificated
that loving someone who is already with another
is misplaced energy. She placed an apricot in my hand
and made me roll it between my palms,
its soft downy skin like velvet across my fingers.
The Ancient Greeks believed that apricot pits
were all the words a dead person meant to say but didn’t,
hardened into a dense stone
hidden deep within that pale orange flesh.
Today, though, desire renders me speechless.
There’s nothing more to say that hasn’t already been said.
When they leave, the boys never exit the normal way:
they have to jump out the window, slide down the roof,
pick the lock on the back door with an extra
bobby pin. Love makes people do strange things.
And the day I held that apricot, I learned
that there’s no room for small talk.
If you love someone, let them know.
Even ghosts have things they wish they’d said.