My discomfort smothers my throat
A phlegm pooling deep in my chest
Choking my words as I try to say them
My cheeks burn

My lips crack and bleed as they say your name
Which exists in a puff of condensation
Bridging the gap between us
Kissing your chin, your cheeks

I can see your fingers twitching as you regard me
Eyes trained on my left earlobe
Avoiding my eyes, my lips
You’re hurting me, did you know?

I can feel wetness on my face
And you become more jittery
I think I’m in love with her
You are incredulous at your own words

My lips continue to bleed as I smile
Water and blood swirl in the dimple of my chin
Tell her, I want to say
But the tide of heartbreak overwhelms the action

You can see it in my eyes, I can tell
And I wish I could feel victory over the regret in yours
But there is no victory in my situation
And you haven’t lost

She’s special. She’s different
You keep saying
Speaking like these qualities are a revelation
And I realize you never thought the same of me

The discomfort spreads to my lungs,
Molten, dangerous, toxic
And I feel my question burning through my tongue
Then what was I?

And you flinch, like I’ve hit you
And you look away, like I overwhelm you
And you sputter, your jaw spasms as you say:
You were my friend

And I’m ashamed
Friend’s don’t do the things that we did
And I feel foolish
My cheeks are glowing with humiliation

Meanwhile the frost bites your tongue, I think
Because you’re quiet for a while
Face frozen in a grimace
And I want to smooth the lines that gather at your forehead

My fingers are numb to touch when they brush yours
But the contact stings anyway
And for the first time you look me in the eyes as I lie and say
It’s okay that you only wanted me when you were getting over someone else

Teuta Zeneli :

Teuta Zeneli

Teuta Zeneli is majoring in International Studies. She draws inspiration for her work by conjuring whatever crisis is currently ruining her life and using it as fuel for poetry.