I'm not sorry about the staircase.
I didn't return your "I love you" because I needed it,
to stabilise the little mind you came and swept through
like a two-minute tornado,
smelling of burnt grass and the steam off cement basketball courts.
You play your Shakesperean charades well,
blowing kisses behind her inebriated back before
you tuck even that tenderness away into
the heavy dots beneath hard-thrown question marks,
and those motherfucker eyes.

Your dispassionate, Mercutio hands, playing with my hairbrush,
quite convinced me, darling,
until they were pulling me into your stone ribcage
– am I forgetting your heartbeat,
or was that elsewhere too? –
with mad Romeo's desperation,
and your lips, like blistering deserts,
smashed against my collarbone;
I wasn't thinking then.
And that last, lingering look,
a soothing salve for these frayed nerves, certainly,
but it did nothing for the disarray
of my helpless mind.