You had known me for 72 hours and I already knew that kissing you lit a fire in my blood that scorched every vessel and corpuscle in my being. And it was during one of those nights when I would forget to breathe while your lips were on me that you took your hand and pressed it to my throat – not so firmly that I blacked out, but not so lightly as to be mistaken for a caress. I saw stars, the air grew hotter, your lips fused me to you and the fire that you lit inside me burned even brighter. And then the next morning, you did what would become a pattern when you couldn’t handle the fire that I lit inside of you.

You choked. But we caught our collective breaths and moved on.

There were the nights later on when you would wrap yourself around me in the tightest vise, stealing the air from my lungs and sucking out piece after piece of my soul with every kiss you gave me. And I would watch the stars flash before my eyes and in the hazy glow of the kind of bleached dawn that only comes from a sleepless night, I would think to myself that losing you would be like losing oxygen and without you, I just might choke. And I did. I gagged on words unspoken, suppressing every “I love you” behind clenched teeth, spitting out words I knew you wanted to hear instead of the ones you didn’t. Because those words would make it too real and you’re not supposed to feel that burn in your blood just yet, right?

Once again, you choked.

And now. The clearest skies remind me of the ones in your eyes and the stars at night remind me of the freckles on your back. I sleep with your t-shirt at night tucked beneath my neck. And I think about your hands in my hair and your lips on my lips and it’s enough to take my breath away. I wake up beating my fists on the bed from dreams where my hands wrapped around your neck but only long enough to make you see stars, the air grow hotter, my lips fusing you to me and the fire that I lit inside you burn even brighter. I feel your ever present phantom hand on my neck and I don’t know how to make that go away.

Oh darling, don’t you get it? I’m choked.



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