Let me ask you about forty blocks, and Don’t Stop Believing, and a pint of Guinness spilled all over the bar buried in the cascade of horrible dive bars we frequent, the clumsy steps taken in the fog of heaven, with flashing lights and the distant echo of bad techno. Let me ask you about the circular escalators and new shoes, cannoli and old men making wistful laments in smoky tones and foreign languages, views of metal structures that held up more than steel, drywall, and printer paper. Let me ask you about taxi rides, magical musicians on stages crowded by sweaty characters reciting lyrics and trapped in the disillusion of the moment.
No, let me tell you—let me tell you something about this whole fucked up thing. You’re thinking of the time I let your plant die, the time I eavesdropped on your phone call and jumped to idiotic conclusions, the time I got royally intoxicated at your company’s fundraiser and told your coworkers about the fifth drawer of your dresser. You’re letting yourself feel shame and blocking out the love. You’re tallying up all those times I let the dishes pile up in the sink, the mornings I left without saying I love you, all the moments where I let you down and it left a mark, and didn’t leave a ring.
Let me show you my love—not now, not in the distant future when you inevitably change your mind and have a change of heart—but in the past, in the walls, in the pictures, in the armoire I still think is hideous but dragged up three flights of stairs and proceeded to put my own clothes in anyway. My love is in the note I left on the fridge two months ago, the left side of the sofa where the weight of us wore out the fabric slowly but surely every time we fell asleep cuddled in limbs and shallow breaths. Look at the bathroom, in the cabinet, where the tampons sit that I bought you. Look on your phone, scroll up through your text messages, listen to the voicemail I left you on the day I got promoted, the echoing words I wanted to share this with you. Go back to where we first met, on the corner of lost and found, and take it in, the setting of either your biggest regret or your truest of fateful and romantic moments.
Just let me love you. Because all I want to do is love you, and you let me sometimes, brokering a weekend, a fight, a passive aggressive brunch with your obnoxious sister. Let me be your anchor, your respite, your punching bag. I want it all, the knife wounds of your bitter words and the soft marks left by your passionate kisses. I want your grocery lists, your unshaved legs, your morning breath. I love it all, especially when you hate it. But I can’t do this alone, love you from outside the field. We have to play this together, as a team, hit or miss, each moment is ours. Sure, you will have your moments, and I, my own, but love is not a series of moments one experiences alone, but the composition of little conversations, caresses, profound but also boring occurrences, all shared between the consciousnesses of two people. One singular experience existing between two separate beings—that is love—that is what I want, to experience life with you. To love you.
Just imagine the last fourteen months without the good, without the bad, without the time I made you laugh so hard you fell off the barstool and bruised your leg. Just think, if you’d never met me, you might be less embarrassed, less broke, more goal oriented. You might have met someone more attractive, more together, less enraging and more suitable to your being. But you’d be less loved, because no one loves your being as much as I do, and no one before or after will see you the way I do, in the rays of unattainable sunlight, squinty and shiny, sweating and alive, or in the beams of the ever changing moon, cycling around us as we cycle around ourselves. I will lose the purpose I feel when I cherish, when I exhale your name and feel the threads of the universe working between us. Imagine a world where we never met. Is that what you want? To never have been bruised, or kissed, or ashamed, or embraced? You’d rather to have never been loved at all?
Well, too bad. Love is not a switch, or a function. It simple is. And I can’t turn it off, and I wouldn’t, no sooner would I stop my own beating heart. So tell me dear, is that how you feel? Do you comprehend my answer to your question? Yes, I love you. No, I don’t want to break up, to break apart, to break.
Let me know that you understand.