“You”

 

You are the bubble of air in my vein.

You are the thought that I’m losing my hair,

You are the guilt of our famous affair,

The heart-stopping feeling of missing a train.

Yours is the presence which smothers my brain

In a gooey catastrophe; yours the derision

Taken on a man who prefers indecision;

Yours is the bittersweet soul of the rain.

“You” is my personal mantra, divinity,

“You” is a blasphemy, taken in vain.

“You” is a theory which questions infinity,

Yours is a logic I can’t ascertain.

You are my blood, and breath, in this unity:

You are a bubble of air in my vein.

 

 

I wrote a terrible version of this when I was sixteen, before I had ever really fallen in love. It was all about how when you are giddy, silly and smitten about someone, you can actually feel pretty ill. Aged twenty-one, after meeting a particular man, I hurriedly texted him an edit which was a combination of memory and impulse, totally apropos nothing: a palimpsest of what had come before so many years ago strangely brought into new light, but reworked by excitement, adoration and extemporisation. Voila, the end result: again, recreated from memory five months later.

Reader: we are now engaged. And I still feel exactly how the poem describes every single day.  

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