In joy

What 
is joy
compared to
a lasting
ache

In joy
I lack the
preoccupation
the restless attachment
the wondering if
my feelings are matched
or returned at all

In joy
all I have
is the way
you leaned in to kiss me

The memory of standing
in the stairwell
you held my gaze
you held me
to share you’re not
dating anyone else

All I have
are the hands
that didn’t let go of mine
from that first kiss
in the middle of your kitchen

I’m not sure how to write
in joy

But I can try.

Reflection

She says to me,

“You get to figure this all out. 
What a beautiful
challenge to overcome.”

She suggests I look
not to the trauma
or the pain
but the fear.
Fear of being left.
Fear of being seen. 

“You look through lenses
scratched and clouded.
You feel through fear.
Until you know your ground,
until you know
what you want
and expect nothing less,
you’ll continue to question.
You’ll continue to feel doubt.”

I look to her
tears decades old
decorate my face. 

“So what now?”

She looks at me with
a knowing smile.

“You already know.”