The Very Beginning of a Sad Ending
We had several margaritas and
some captivating conversation at a
place in your neighborhood and then
I walked you home. Do you remember
it like I do? Standing there at your doorstep
after the second date, leaning in for another kiss,
just one more, you know, for the road.
I knew I could have stayed. But something
held me back. Something good, for once.
I wanted to wait — to try and do things right.
Go way off brand. What I wanted then was
to go on the long walk alone, straight through
Prospect Park all the way to the other side
on a warm July Brooklyn night, breaking a sweat,
listening to music and smiling to myself like an idiot
because I knew seeing you again was something
exciting I had to look forward to in a time when
excitement had been mostly replaced with bouts of
anhedonia. I barely knew you, but you’d made me feel
something great, something special, when I was used to
feeling sad if not nothing at all.
On the walk my foot started to hurt — a burning sensation in the ball.
But I kept going mile after mile. I didn’t know it was breaking,
that I’d soon be diagnosed with my first ever fracture.
That I was potentially being physically punished for what was
coming, what I would wrought, by some unseen, unknowable
force that I try my best to not believe in — because if it exists
it’s likely in the form of a Piper I’m going to have to keep paying.
Standing on your porch kissing goodnight, I don’t think you thought
for a second that things would turn out the way they did —
that you had any idea at that point that I was going to be
such a big mistake.
But I have a tendency to surprise
people in the worst of ways.
You now know this
better than anybody.
Last time I was in Brooklyn I walked past that old place of yours.
I know you’re no longer there. But I don’t know where you’ve gone.
I probably never will. And maybe that’s for the best. I’ll always be sorry,
but you’ll never get to see just how sorry I can be. The fault for that is
This is the end.