When you tell me that you love me, I have no doubt that you do. But your words fall on numb ears. They hear you speak, but the nerves are disconnected from the soggy lobes of my brain. You look into my brown eyes, and for the first time, notice that there is nothing behind them. They are dark holes that swallow light like a pill with a swig of soda; bitter taste bound with bubbles that burn the whole way down. My nose cannot smell the sweet incense of your affection, but I see the fire burning down the stick, ashes writhing away from the flame. Though I feel your hands, they are too soft to strike sparks on the flint of my skin. No, you do not excite me. My heart trudges on, unable to be quickened by anything other than my inner metronome. The ticking time counter that signifies my days from nights and months from years. You tell me that you love me and see a void behind my eyes. And you realize that you could tell me that a hundred times, and it wouldn’t make a difference. You have loved a beautiful shell you found on the beach; what was inside is long gone–unable to sense.
Published by avantzine
Avant is Rowan's undergraduate magazine of literature and art. Funded by the Student Government Association, it is typically published every semester. Submissions of poetry, prose, and visual art are accepted from matriculated students throughout the year. Selections are made anonymously by an editorial board and staff made up of undergraduate students. Members of the editorial board are elected each spring by all voting members of Avant. This semester, Avant meets every Tuesday at 7 PM over Zoom. View all posts by avantzine