dean_russo
LOVE LETTER NO. 1: TO MY PIT-BULL SELF
by Sarah Thursday

I love the teeth of your love
how you pit-bull deep
into the flesh of loving
How you make shrines
in the empty spaces,
abandoned apartments
Shrines to former residents
of borrowed books and toiletries
envelopes full of photographs
and letters in pen
How you never fill
the same space with new
but keep building out
expand the frames and floors
How you know when to change the locks
and when to nail it shut

I love how you calculate
estimate the risk
How you trust
the unnamed algorithm
the intuitive push, flashing “Yes,
love this one, let that one in!”
How soft your wrought-iron grip
holds every name tight
each face, its own story
each moment, a glass in your pane
How you refuse to argue
about the wrong
or right way to love

I love how so much of it matters
how you will forgive
as many times
as they will call
and ask for it
How you defend this weakness
with the expense of wasted time
Your time-to-give being
your love currency
not words, not gifts,
not your doing-for-me
But your minutes and hours
your speak to me, eat with me
your listen and watch with me
sit in this space of air
I breathe with me is love

I love how love-greedy you get
How you collect time
and stuff it in bags and boxes
shove it on shelves, in closets
covering walls, blocking doorways
in empty apartments
You guard-dog this house
an unapologetic hoarder
How you refuse to purge it
refuse to loosen your grip
Set shrines in windowsills
light blood candles
There is always room
for more

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR:¬†I consider this poem a self-portrait because it describes what I love about the way that I love. This was inspired by another poet’s love letter to herself. I thought about how hard it is for me to let go of others, but that I love that about myself. I love like a pit-bull.

IMAGE: “The Passion Pit” by Dean Russo. Prints available at fineartamerica.com. Visit the artist at deanrussoart.com.

sarah_thursday

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Sarah Thursday calls Long Beach, California, her home, where she advocates for local poets and poetry events. She runs a Long-Beach-focused poetry website called CadenceCollective.net, co-hosts a monthly reading with one of her poetry heroes, G. Murray Thomas, and just started Sadie Girl Press as a summer job and way to help publish local and emerging poets. She just completed her first full length poetry collection, All the Tiny Anchors. Find and follow her on SarahThursday.com, Facebook, or Twitter.