I spend my nights telling myself
stories about my own life,
as if the repetitions of foreign sounds
will recall memories you’ve spent
your whole life teaching me to forget.
I whisper words to myself that
I can never quite make out; my
sounds are so easily covered with
your voice, never booming, but so
much stronger than my own.
I always thought you were stronger,
so much stronger than me, but
it turns out you were just better
at telling stories.

I didn’t always tell my stories
to my empty twin-sized mattress;
I used to tell you.
My thoughts used to flood your own,
waves of what you’d call fiction
crashing over the both of us.
You kept warning me I’d drown.
And these nights I’m forced to listen
in a way I never thought I did before.
I always thought I’d dried myself
off of your voice as soon as it hit me.
But here I am and you’re still raining
down, my head is still soaked
with your stories:
stories of my desires
stories of me wanting it
stories of it being my fault.

I haven’t heard your voice in so long
but I hear your stories playing over
and over on tapes that come out
every time the room turns black.
Tonight it plays as loud as ever
but I get just enough reprieve to
wonder if I’ll ever get to hear
my voice through the rain again.