And I was a prize you won ’cause I let you
again and again and I
didn’t know then
that I’d never get you the way that you had me
you had me, you had me
you had me so wholly
your eyes wrapped around me
your lips would control me and I
didn’t know that your heart couldn’t hold me
I didn’t know it would never know me
never want me
anything but a lack, you see
I was the prize you won ’cause I let you and
you never knew
never knew what you had.
He should mean more to me than you do. This is newer, less stripped of hope, less full of promises that can’t be kept. He’s disappointed me less than you have, hasn’t had as many chances to.
So why is it that I can go around that bend and pass right by his street and not even notice it until it’s out of sight? And how come when I get anywhere near yours I have to stay in the far lane or turn before I reach it or else I’ll end up there?
Is it because I’ve known your place longer? Does that give it a stronger gravitational pull on me? Maybe it’s because I’m in your area under different circumstances, ones that make me impulsive, impetuous. Maybe it’s habit, a habit that was never comfortable enough to have before it had to be broken.
Or maybe it’s just you.
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.
It was there on the tip of his nose, three shades darker than his dark skin. It was right in the very middle, and the symmetry was so unnerving I just wanted to stare at it and stare at it until it either stopped being perfect or I went blind.
And he was always grinning. Add a grin below a perfectly centered nose freckle and what do you get? You get me wanting to steal it and put it in my pocket and take it to class and look at it all day long and say fuck you, phonology worksheet, this freckle wins.