I remember when you wished
you had not spoken – three words
which wrapped themselves like smoke
around our ribs and settled, thickly,
as ash on our lips.
Three words that feel like glitter
or dust yet taste sticky and sweet
or bitter when consumed
in a different light.
And I felt like an ornament,
a mantelpiece, a moth-eaten dress
in a closet – covered in layers
of I love you, aching to grow older
in the quiet of our empty house.
Poem: © Kristiana Reed 2020