Jan. 9 - "No passive-aggressive poems"

by Jason Wardell

1. January, 2011.
The sky froze in January.
I said
I needed to move on,
I wasn’t going to wait,
I was going,
we were gone.

2. January, 2011.
No passive-aggressive poems, you said.
I don’t know if you were talking to yourself
or to me.

3. February - June, July, 2010.
February 14 was warm,
and though we mocked
crass consumerism
we set a study date,
I gave you a lily,
I found some words
and you agreed to being
together; we finally thought
we’d give it a shot.

I can’t even remember
if it was June or July.
I’m fine giving both up.
We calmly talked about
why it wouldn’t work,
about what you needed,
what I didn’t and don’t have
and in my anger, I agreed
to being apart; we thought
we’d give that a shot.

4. January, 2011.
"We’re not having sex
before I leave," you said.
"Just so you know."

I tried anyway,
ultimately deciding
you were right.

At least I think
it was a decision.

"I don’t remember
our last time together,"
I thought.

"I want to remember," I said.
"I don’t want to regret," you said.
"Me neither."

Men aren’t much more than hip thrusts,
occasionally well-timed.

5. August, September, 2010.
August or September,
we broke the silence
simultaneously, came to
a conclusion that was better
than everything.

6. October, 2010.
After we slept together at your house,
you told me I’m not the one,
we bought a pregnancy test
at the store slightly further away,
then I left.

7. December, 2010.
December was more of the same
invisible man routine.

I was getting used to being
an imaginary friend with benefits.

8. January, 2010.
My face is freezing. I’m blushing.
I step out of my car, onto the road,
one hand tracing the surface of the hood
as I round the front to the sidewalk,
turn for the door, and ring the bell.
In ten seconds, I run crisis aversion,
how to minimize the damage when I
ruin what might not even be a date.
At zero, your brother opens the door,
I shake his hand, he compliments my tie,
you smile, we hug, and we’re back to the car.

It’s warm for January.

You tell me you need time to decide.
I say I need to move. I’m not going
to wait. I’m not going. We’re here.

Deep breath.


Author's Note: This is probably better off staying in my journal.

Posted on 01/09/2011
Copyright © 2022 Jason Wardell

Member Comments on this Poem
Posted by Gabriel Ricard on 01/09/11 at 10:16 PM

Well personally I'm glad you shared it here. It's brutal, brilliant stuff, man. The last one is an easy favorite.

Posted by Ava Blu on 01/09/11 at 11:34 PM

I never not love your words. Maybe it is too personal to be a poem. Maybe it's too personal for me to really comment on here. However, sometimes we just need to say these things no matter how personal they are. As someone how has personal romantic ties to a few people on this site (the past, always the past), I find myself sometimes censoring because of it. We should never censor because of it.

Posted by Ava Blu on 01/09/11 at 11:35 PM

who* not how. Sigh. I hate typos. Sorry for the second comment.

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