Taylor, I Love You, But We Should Have Gone to Therapy Instead of Fighting with a Frat Boy in the Rain
Absence makes the heart
burst open. Every now and then,
Reason yields to desire.
Grief logic ebbs and flows—
a linguistic pull towards home.
My self-talk snags on a memory,
and I inhabit the dream in reverse—
total eclipse of coping techniques.
Instead of calling my X, I spend time with family.
At dinner, my grandma uses Tinder
as a verb. Have I Tindered any men
this month? I change the subject.
I jokingly say that buying Taylor Swift tickets
was the most stressful day of my life.
This upsets my entire family. They partake
in a rage-fueled trauma dump. My mind grows
another hour. The alphabet rearranges itself again.
The alphabet is a symbol for sounds
that live inside the body. The body
is biodegradable; Taylor’s scarf is not.
What if we let Things control us
because we know they will outlast us?
Does time still paralyze you, Taylor?
I don’t want to be a human
with a body anymore. I want
to be a garden filled with toads
the size of Taylor Swift’s discography.
From my periphery, someone steps
inside my dirt. Honorary lover,
help me cope with grief.
No, this isn’t right, either.
I go back to dinner with the fam.
My sister fights with my uncle
over reproductive rights.
Sorry Taylor, but the etymology
of hysteria is dumber than dancing
in refrigerator light. No, there’s
nothing wrong with my uterus.
I’m just really fucking sad.
All the things we’ve done for love,
but none of us went to therapy.
It’s not like you lay on a couch
taking a Rorschach test, but fine.
Let’s make it cliché. Taylor,
tell me what you see here.
No, this isn’t your X
lover’s window streaked with rain.
No one’s dancing in a fenced-in
parking lot with you. These lines
don’t map the position of your bodies.
Blades of grass don’t crowd
an arbitrary boundary.
This is a square with vertical lines inside it.
This is a symbol for our grief.
We can draw lines around anything,
Taylor. We can make anything
mean everything to us.
Amber Day Wild is a Certified Child Life Specialist who helps children cope with stressful medical procedures. She also writes poems about her experience having borderline personality disorder. Her work has appeared in ē· rā/ tiō, Ghost City Review, and The Cackling Kettle. You can find her on Instagram @amberdaywild.