YOU SAID LOVE IS A CHOICE, AND AFTER EIGHT MONTHS I BEGIN TO BELIEVE YOU
As usual you've saved us, peered over
one more precipice and suggested
crisis will keep until tomorrow, and falling
into bed is easier than falling apart; at least
the landing is familiar. So this weekend found us
waking up together, half dazzled that our old routines still held.
We've worked our way out of an ending,
though fear still whispers underneath the fan blades’ whir,
vibrato at the edges of my voice. But maybe love
is larger than unsettled guts and dizziness,
perhaps it's pieced together, patchworked, learned.
Maybe all we needed was an afternoon spent champagne-drunk,
toasting my toothbrush beside your sink,
celebrating each side of the bed, your arm
still heavy on my waist. And all day I was stunned
by everything I get to keep, whether for a year,
or three, or sixty: your bright, trilled laugh,
your mouth that's always brimming
with song, all your half-finished projects,
your hands that mend fences and always find mine.
Maybe someday we won't need champagne,
won't need to reach for one another
just to reassure ourselves that distance
hasn't claimed us yet.
How lovers live without that constant touch
takes a patience I may never understand,
but perhaps it's also learned—
maybe after years spent fingertip to fingertip
sharing air will be proximity enough.
Maybe someday the glow of your smile
from across a room will sate me.
I hope I will still go to you
and kiss you anyway.
HALEY CAMPBELL is a poet and editor who lives in Austin, Texas. She received her BA in English from the University of Mary Washington. Her work has appeared in Hypertrophic Lit and Mojave Heart Review, and she's currently a reader for Pidgeonholes. You can find her online at haleycampbell.net, or on Twitter at @haley_exe.