Last Words | Tiffinie Alvarez

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I wrote about you,
wove your features into poems,
painted your dimples onto the lines of a page.
Strung you up like twinkling stars across the header
of every poem I was proud of that year.

I wrote about you,
through the days
where the hours blurred together
where you left me in the dark,
eyes empty, staring at a wall, making friends with the cracks in the concrete.

I wrote you whole.

Boxed your flaws up in the back.
Scribbled out word after word.
Turned you into perfection,
a final draft ready for publication.

And you tore me to shreds,
ripped the pages of my poetry from my mind.
Rewrote my stanzas
spilled ink, dark blue, across the fresh printed pages.
Turned my words to curses

Hit the backspace on every line.
Tainted the stars until they were jet black like your eyes that night.
Broke me down until I was little more than a pawn,
someone to make you feel bigger
like an ill-placed capital letter.

And I still write about you.

In the after.
In the time between then and now.
And I hope one day someone reads what I made you into,
all those perfect pieces from years passed.
And says,

“She wrote you better than you deserved”.

Tiffinie Alvarez is a 6th Grade ELA teacher and a long-term reader. She currently resides in Massachusetts with her husband and their cat Twyla. Instagram: @bookshelfontheright

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