by M. Fletcher
Spoken word poetry for my late husband
|I want to go back in time
Back to the first time you kissed me and stole my heart at a UAB Blazers football game. We were both in our marching band uniforms and you said “I won’t kiss you until you ask” and of course I asked. I was 14.
Back to “your eyes are the most beautiful color in the world to me”
Even though you’re colorblind. Somehow that made it mean so much more.
Back to the constant texting with parenthesis smileys in every message and innocent joy behind every word on that phone screen.
Back to the ice skating rink when I stole your leather jacket and skated circles around you. You couldn’t stay upright on the ice so you dragged me down with you and we just laughed.
I want to go back to the first ring you ever gave me.
Sitting on my parent’s basement couch you told me to close my eyes. You put it on my left hand.
It was gold plated with a fake purple stone. I adored it even though it turned my finger green.
Let’s go back to the day you were going to propose and I beat you to it, sliding my gold plated ring onto your pinky with tears in my eyes and anxiously reaching to your pocket for my new one.
It was sterling silver with a cubic zirconium stone. I never took it off. I tried on your last name before I ever tried on that ring. I was 16.
Back to the night I climbed out of my bedroom window and rode on the back of your motorcycle to spend time with you because I missed you. I wore a dirt bike helmet and your jacket to ride. You gave me your air soft dog tags before you took me home and I fell in love with them.
I wanna go back to the first night we actually slept next to each other. I remember waking up on your chest, feeling your heartbeat. I miss that.
We got married at the same place we got engaged. I was 18.
Our honeymoon was a week of living together in Biloxi, Mississippi, eating nothing but pizza and taco bell, doing nothing but laying in bed together all day long.
You used to caress my body with the softest touch for fear of shattering my beauty.
That was before the first bruise.
I want to hear our daughters heartbeat for the first time again and pretend you didn’t tell me over and over that I never deserved to be her mom. Before you pulled her from my arms and told me not to use her as a human shield. A shield from what…
She’s a year and a half now. She has night terrors and she wakes up screaming.
If I could just rewind to the night you packed up your car and left, I would bottle up my confidence from that day and save it for days like today. I missed you a lot today.
You know what I wanna go back to?
I want to go back home to the place they put you beneath a headstone with your name.
I want to whisper “I love you” through the ground like you can still hear me.
I want to hit my knees and rip the dirt away until I reach your casket, place my hands, these hands that have already touched you for the last time, on the thing your body now calls home and grieve the memory of the sound of your voice when you once told me “Beautiful, you will always be my home”
I just feel like an empty house now.
I’m 22 now. Our daughter will be 2 in October.
You were 23. They found you on March 27th. You would have been 24 on May 19th.