we lay quietly in the silences preceding pre-dawn secrets,
reinventing each other from the ashes of muted truths and liar’s swords
and i said the only thing i thought could make you stay
as the snow began to fall:

“tell me a story”

relief fluttering your voice like a breeze through a stifling room
as you fell into fantasy with such practiced ease:
dragons and far-off lands
where fair-haired girls who look nothing like me
fall terribly in love with the hims they just can’t live without
(and all i ever wished for was a silly paper crown)

& come tomorrow or once upon a time,
we will speak nothing of this
as you slip into the gray day like a faded knight
and i drink coffee with my mother and she hands me the truth,
simply as a child’s prayer:
“if you can live without him, do.”

i don’t even like dragons.
(true story.)