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"Thumb Print"

an impression.

the gentle and subtle hint of where
your everlasting thumb print kissed the inner linings
of what i have missed. and i missed you.
grieved the tears of a faux funeral complete with
Hail Mary's/Amazing Grace/baby's breath and
coffin lined inner lace.
i mourned you.
mourned not the death of you going to the
infinite land of non-living because your
presence here shows that your breath was worth giving
and i see you before me not a mirage
hidden surprise you are, yet your body tells lies.
here. but not here.
i grieve.
Grieve because I am losing you
have lost you
will lose you.
the inevitable of Glady's Knights
"Neither one of Us" plays on repeat
i nod my head in comparison as I weep
trying to show my faith in what was but cannot be
you have left that lasting impression on me.

your thumb print.

I still
feel the heat upon my skin as you touched
the coldness of me we were naked skin
glossed by sweat in the moonlight and
fruitless enemies impregnated by raw emotion and
scared senseless of feelings given to the dawn of the light
ahead. ahead, i see the mere possibility
of what was not supposed to be
and merely i am the lasting impression
the cool collected evidence
the shaky remembrance and
exhibit A upon a juror's list-
i am your thumb print.

an impression.

the inky residue of forget me nots
scented with my perfume mingled with your cologne
dancing in the air as we tangoed into each others arms
the cursive letters swayed by slanted hands
and coffee filled nights where insomnia reached its limit
and calligraphy met her match to rose adorned stationery pages.
the marker filled pen that bled to the fingertips
of curved nails, scantily chipped after writing this poem
for you/ as an ink rememberance of residue
you are there. were there. was there.
if my recollection stands corrected
is it memories of what I am to feel
or loose interpretations of what the mirror
image has reflected?
i have lost time.
precious years and wasted tears
dates upon pages
go to month after month/meses after meses
and finally, i see
the love letters emblem "return to sender"
stamped upon the address to me.

an impression.

Your thumb print
has changed me/amazed me/
soul cleansed me and persuaded me
to do freaky shit that i won't disclose
and have me bend over backwards as I disrobe
arch my back moan real slow
be your freak at night housewife in the day
strap around the ankle touch the toes
type of secret ho'.
for you.
for you, i have greased your scalp as you sat in my lap
telling me tales of hopeful wishes and secret ambitions
as comb meets hair and fingers touch scalp.
for you.
for you, i have put up with familia fights and petty arguments
choosing sides and standing behind my fence
because walls sometimes make better neighbors
and what is family then if we have a child
and thirty hours poured my soul into a son which I labored?
for you.
for you, i have distinguished passionate flames burned
from the internal/external ex-factor
relinquished selfish thoughts of wedding dresses virgin white
and uplifted doves released into the air
rice thrown on asphalt curbs and removing the sexy right leg garters with care.

you have changed me.

thumb print. you have seen me.
the best and the worst of me
the ride or die and mega flirt of me
the soft the smooth the rough of me.
the nympho when i want to be of me
the simplistic and complicated
definitive and pluralistic of me.
the little the all. the give the take the
sin the blessing the curse the loving of me.

how dare you

leave that upon me.
leave that lasting thumb print. Leave that impression
when I had no desire to fall in love
be in love
have love
acquire love
then keep love?

love, always finds a way

yet your thumb print on me
cannot be
washed away.

-b.r.rivera

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