oh, i forgot to be

i.
if you promise,
i’ll never tell about the time you pushed too hard
and i fell facefirst into this maelstrom of bullshit and backstabbed nonvictims
(because face it, stockholm syndrome begins before the plot is fully hatched).

ii.
i’ll never say “you told me so.”

iii.

my posture is utter shit, and i worried that you were going to notice.
i never seem to smile when other people can see;
my brow creases into folds
and the stacked chain of my vertebrae bows like inverted scorpion tails beneath the weight of it all:
hopes and dreams and suppressed screams,
the occasional laugh.
i carry every whisper you engraved into my collarbone
and the weight of wanting you on my shoulders.

iv.
if you promise,
i won’t remind you that it was you who said it first,
and that i never pushed you away half as hard as you pulled.

v.

i’ll make a deal with you.
if you promise
i won’t speak anymore at all.
i know how much the sound of my voice rankles you–
i know you’ll only answer my questions if i stop asking.

vi.
if you promise,

vii.
i’ll keep my cries to myself.
i’ll only feel where you can’t see or sense it (but you know all of me and that is not possible).

viii.

if you promise to love me i’ll never speak again.

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