Let me be the wronged when I try to understand where you go in the evenings. Let me follow you around the corner and see you dart into the bushes, across the lane, to the subway. I follow and wait. You are not that part of me anymore that begins inside, pours out, circles and makes a trap; you are not that element that is pure, not anymore. <<I had that part, wrapped in cloth, stuck beside me. You are not that part. You are not.>> On the other side of town, you look up at an apartment building. You stand there, so I stand with you. But you are not that part of me that wishes for armageddon when I’m alone, not anymore. You make a phone call, make two; you cross the street then back again, sit on a bench and stare at the sidewalk. But you are not that part of me that requests fairness, even demands it, when I am shunted to the back of the line or sent packing with my precious cargo when all I wanted was to take one step forward. You go to the door and someone buzzes you in, and there you go, so in a hurry that your muscles don’t even know who you are; at the elevator, you stand and wait, to your credit you only push the elevator button once. Soon you are gone.
You are not that part of me that holds its breath under water until you are drunk. You are not that part of me that slips on your own blood and needs to have someone remind them of what this disease is and what it can do to me. You are not that part of me. You are not.
When you come home, I am sleeping. You smell clean. You put a hand on my shoulder and remind me of where you came from, how you strode in, why you find it so difficult to leave. I am happy enough with that. When you turn me around and whisper, make my eyes open, I look at you but you don’t see me, the parts of me that you are not anymore. You kiss me, and I reply. You are not that part of me. But this part is.