It took me six months to put you into words
even though I had the bulk of my material
meticulously catalogued in pictures this whole time. You hear
songs and read books in which the writer
recalls what they wore on the very first date
but I was so obsessed and convicted that this was a story
I wanted to tell. I did not have the voice
to speak back then, so I have saved it for now. I
recorded every single outfit I wore to see you;
all sixteen of them. They form a Winter/Spring fashion editorial,
beautiful spreads that span a rise
in the mercury and a descent in my mercurial self.
Print the pages in color and you will clearly see
my face flushed in half of them
in my attempts to flush you out. For I would get drunk
to think of you less, and you would think of me more
after you got drunk. This was our way of meeting
each other in the middle even if that meant meeting you
at your place. My records additionally detail where I bought
every article of clothing and by the end of our – affair? romance?
I do not know the word that accurately defines what we had –
I could also describe the clothes you wore in detail. My compulsive need to
document and memorize aside, it was not difficult
to remember what you wore on all these nights:
flip flops, straight light blue jeans, and a plain white shirt. Your shirt
once had a nosebleed stain on it and I pointed this out to you.
I felt like a much deeper reflection could
be made on the phenomenon of you choosing to
wear the same thing around me – one outfit, over and over again, from
a fully stocked wardrobe of other clothes, while I was carefully
dressing myself each time, for you and for me and for societal expectations of
men and women and for this poem.