An Earthling Question

very close, very fast:
the feeling frightened me
before you even flew here.
though not foreign,
i hadn’t felt it for years—

like and unlike
the alaskan wilderness man,
but more like my inexplicable urge,
at eleven years old, to know a woman
who would never be my sister.

my imagination idolized
and demonized her
so doggedly i didn’t know
if i was a lesbian,
a lunatic,
or just
a loser.

while i’ve since learned
i’m largely heterosexual and
that wasn’t and this isn’t sexual,
it’s shameful nonetheless.

my depression demands i desire
a love i don’t deserve.

the emptiness and emotions inspire
an intense insecurity that comes
to a head right before i shed—

why am i writing you right now
when i know this is temporary?
the tension will relax and
the tears will relent
if i just wait.

but somehow now is forever,
and i’m convinced i’ll die alone.
i need a release—

i need you i need you to hear me.
i’m convinced my chest cavity is caving in
and you are the only hand to reach me
through the rubble.

and you indulge me:
my impulses and instincts
and irresponsibility,
despite my irrational insistence
that you ignore my existence.

i don’t know why.

and i don’t know why you,
but you’re not the first
and you won’t be the last.
every time is a warning sign:
a fine line between
control and collapse.

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