I was too late

appealing to your selfish side
when you’d already strung him up
tied him to the wall and said you’re welcome
as he screamed for me
and oh how he would sing for me
and all the words he’d string for me
but arms in chains cannot hold anything


One day, I was walking by myself and thinking about freckles, and I decided to ask him if he had any. He replied that he had a few, on his knuckles. I pictured his hands, dark and smooth, and asked if you could see them against his skin, because I’d seen his hands a hundred times and never seen any freckles. He thought that was funny.

He also told me once that I only liked him because he was the first intelligent black guy I’d ever met, which was not only untrue, but highly offensive. I never forgave him for it, but I liked him all the same.