she's a halogen-headlight glare
all chapped lips & forgotten smiles

he's sure it might make her crack if
she tried; shimmering shards of glass falling
as the windshield snaps. her carefully
constructed façade would do the same

she hasn't realized yet that he noticed her
imitation apathy a shield that she wields
much like a weapon. it makes everything
too easy

he hasn't been able to tear his eyes away

she wants to rule the world; he
can see it in her eyes. in his she sees
naïveté & disappointment several
decades ahead of where they stand in
this moment, now.

he wants to know her name, a sigh of
sound that whispers through his mind like
a vision or a vindication. & even though she stands
willow-thin & waiting
he can't ever find the nerve.

she wonders how she falls, fell, is still
falling, this paragon of perfection
the last she'd ever think to want. but
the stolen glimpses never seemed to be
quite enough & the wasted opportunities
have become their anniversary. he shines
at the corner of her vision while
she doesn't think she's watching –
who thought her need would be
quite this overwhelming?

he wonders what she'd think if she knew
he'd been in love with her for years but
always from a distance; too close &
her proximity singed, leaving him
raw & open

she ignores him in the hopes
he'll get the message she's been flashing
like a bullhorn at a Sunday-
mourning service, redyellowgreen light
a mesh of mixed signals she's not
even sure she can figure out. & so when
he stands in front of her, his popularity
pretense propping him up as he doesn't look
doesn't see her, she pretends not to see him

he ignores the sly remarks from those who
surround him, because they don't, can't, won't matter
just a group of extras, waiting for their placement on the set
but when everything has been pushed & prodded
just right, & the scene is ready,
she always forgets her lines

she knows they are on the precipice
of something great, waiting for
the ice to slip from beneath her feet &
send her sliding & slipping down the
mountain. she only hopes it won't be
that painful

he knows they are spinning themselves
further & farther away with every
wasted breath, a tepid tempest in the
wake of the tornado she lives &

she isn't quite sure when she realizes she's
given him up; can't put a finger on the
nanosecond he ceased to matter, but in
that split second, nothing and everything
seemed to change

he isn't quite sure when he stops looking for her
in the hall, but then he blinks & realizes
she's been gone for decades, relegated to
nothing but a fuzzy image in his mind

she'll quench the occasional doubt, stall the
infrequent what if; he'll wonder what
might have been
& both will coast through life with
the riptide always ready to sweep them
under, but

together they might have flown

So, this pretty much sucks. As it turns out, it was an "assignment" -- i.e., write a poem greater than 500 words -- given to me by the evil Myrika. I hate poetry, and especially mine, but nonetheless would enjoy hearing what you think. And yes, it's sad. Sorry, happy poetry makes me want to gag.

Much love,