All my love had always been held
in callused touch.
I was used to unreturned calls;
unopened text messages;
laughing at jokes that weren’t funny;
pretending not to be hurt when
he said he wanted casual,
as if me taking us seriously
was a silly miscalculation.
I’d stay awake nights
the bags under my eyes
heavy with tears
like lost luggage,
a carousel spinning away.
Every pair of hands upset me to the point I thought
I had made a grand mistake,
thinking there was not a single soft pair of hands
in the world meant for me.
I had been so used to being shut out
that your warmth and tenderness terrified me.
But you didn’t leave–you said,
“Where else would I rather be,
than here, with you,
as you have so graciously made room for me?”