They were little cuts at first. I almost didn’t notice
till I saw the crimson trickle on my wrist, moving
towards my fingers. I didn’t realize it was you–
you running for a band-aid, silent, head bowed,
cheeks red. You tended the wound. The scar
quickly faded, the band-aid now occupied a tiny
spot in a landfill; my DNA mixed with rotting
fruit or shredded documents, waste.
The next time I noticed. Your angry eyes cut
through flesh. It was painless, the bleeding.
I was numb with realization. Again you grabbed
a band-aid and used remorse to wrap the wound.
The scar was deeper. It wouldn’t disappear.
I forgot it, moving ahead, swallowing cautions.
Then it happened again. My blood laced in your love.
You shrugged. Another accident? A deeper slice and
not a single band-aid left. They have all been used
and lay buried in trash–
my blood, bits of my heart, gone, cut away.
So I bleed. You cry, knife in hand.
Somehow, you are able to mutter why.
(previously appeared in Laura Hird)