The day we met again, I burned the tip
off my middle finger, and spent the afternoon
with it extended to the world.
I burned it on hot sugar wax, right after saying to myself
don’t burn yourself with this.
I was waxing because I remembered how we’d made each other laugh
the night we met, and the way your laughter had
bubbled inside me
and how I wanted you to think I was the kind of girl who
always looked the way the world says a girl should look
so I sat with my finger under the tap, one armpit bare
the other hairy,
summoning up the courage to go on.
(Twenty minutes under running water is best
for a burn, although scientists
don’t yet know why.)
Did I say
don’t burn yourself
because I knew I would?
The day we met again, I came home and wished I could
take out my heart and hold it
under the tap