you told me to close my eyes and count to ten,
to come and find you when i opened them again
but in the darkened beats i felt your fingers
intertwine with mine. “i didn’t want you to be alone,”
you said. we decided to play tag instead.
that summer we stained our fingerprints
with chlorine and strawberry popsicles
but soon, years drew lines across our faces and sad smiles
held stories we saved for red wine and winter nights
until, finally, I told you about him.
“close your eyes and count to ten,” you said
it was summer when he stained my fingerprints
with kisses covered in poison, but you wiped my tears
that winter and said, “now open them”
and in the glow of the firelight, you reached your hand
towards mine and promised, “you never have to be alone again.”