The Letter I Cannot Send You
Knowing I was right all along is very little consolation. I remember how my instincts were screaming at me despite your denials, how I remained unconvinced even when you seemed to return to something like normal.
And today, confirmation is cutting me in half. Yet, the injustice cannot be undone, the water will never return to its place beneath the bridge. Even this awful impotence I feel is useless.
I’m not angry at you. I know you could never tell me. I know why you had to cut me off. Even back then I understood.
You had all the signs: the abrupt coldness, the shame, the physical withdrawal, the unexplained and lengthy disappearances, and the extraordinary bitterness. That night when you tore strips off me, when I was the stand-in for every damned man, when you spat bile and then cried in my arms …
I see the wounded girl in you; right there beside the fire brand woman. I sense the tenderness in you, sitting behind its now necessary mask. I almost believed I was imagining it – until last night.
This is no victory for me – even if that shamelessly vain part of me is satisfying himself with the idea that it wasn’t me you were rejecting.
Today my tears are made of blood but I will not make you see them. Nor will I play the role of valiant male protector, wrapping my wounds in self-righteous fury. I should have been your champion two years ago. But instead I was your needy lover, wondering why his girl had gone cold. Knowing why – but too afraid to give it breath.
I was useless to you then – but I will not be now. There will be no scenes. I will not ask. I will not even hint that I know. Instead, I will wring these words out and throw them into space. Maybe someone else will read them and maybe they will have more courage.