by Ainne Frances dela Cruz
In dark girls I see your skin. The lines of veins delicately whispering on the underside of your arms. The graceful motion of your fingers, how you always seemed on air, entrapped with wings; you who only had to rise to fly.
I, in another time, I see you. Dark of night, and dead weights, as everything must be to your ancient body. Yet, I love this of you. Even the headiness of the scent of entrails rushing after you, slapping on my hair, and I am left, matted and bloodied. And my heart left matted and bloodied.
I see now, you wanted to eat my heart. Dark blood pulsing through arteries. Transparency? Doesn't my skin scream my love? Yes, my heart is yours. You only had to ask.
Do you remember Chinese water torture? One drop a minute to a prisoner would seem like an eternity of waiting for the deluge. And this, your wings rushing through light, beating through my ears like bats, high-pitched, tortures me. Wanting to get through your skin, carried away on your nails. Wanting to be you, dark as flight, as flight is, to one land-bound.
I am bound to one who flits from transparency, to a land opaque, where feelings must darken, and become murky. From water to blood, from oxygen to air so thin and pure, I have trouble breathing. But this is what we come to in the end, isn't it? You have clutched me so tightly that I can let go and fall, but always find myself in your talons. The nails curved inwardly, my stomach heaves.
To become one, to be so close that the skin you hold is my skin, that when I look through the dark, I can see you. To hold me as if I was in you, your skin, your blood, my blood, one. This is what you do best, isn't it? Touch things about to vanish. In your eyes I see myself. Will you see me always this way? Lips stained with your blood, fingers gripping your wings.
Do you want to fly? you asked. I nodded. Then close your eyes. The first bite, the first tear at my skin does feel like weightlessness. Levitation, blood escaping from me, finally free, skin to skin, and body to body. No longer heavy. You carried me forever. You don't have to do so now.
I can fly.
Last updated May 27, 2019