He.

Maybe it’s a test. Yes, a test. I’ve been tried, wrung, hung, thrown, ripped, literally thrown under a bus and stomped with spikes. Kinda like when a product is in the development phase and is being tested for durability. For example, a maxi pad. Imagine the commercials: how many ways can this thing be twisted and turned? How much shit can we pour onto it before it becomes overwhelmed and collapses into itself?

Thing is, it won’t fall apart. That pad has wings! Back-up, baby! Like the maxi pad in the menstruation commercial that makes the big boys look away in disgust, I refuse to give in. This isn’t a test, it’s a joke. Yes, a joke. This type of heartache can’t be in vain. The times that I have cried into my steering wheel on the way home from work count for something. I carry the generations of resentment mixed with equal parts love on my shoulders like a badge of honor.

To the God that I never pray to: Please tell me it’s all a joke. I’ll submit to your bidding, denounce my incredulity and heathen tendencies, and bow at your feet until I am reduced to dust if you tell me that when my time comes, He will be by my side, faithfully, singularly. He will be my partner in the afterlife. He will make up for the time I spent walking alone. The pain I spent while comprised of flesh and bone will pale in comparison to the ecstasy in which I will indulge while a faithful, ethereal servant in your Fatherly skies. Lord, I need you to tell me it’s so. 

That’s what keeps me going: the thought that when I die, the truth will be revealed to have been all a joke. He has been, all along, mine. That we will love and reign together as we should.

My heart it breaks / every step that I take / but I’m hoping at the gates / they’ll tell me that you’re mine. – Born to Die, Lana Del Rey

Don’t you know I need you, Lord / don’t you know that I need ya? Don’t you know that I need ya? – Sinnerman, Nina Simone

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Rey.

I hate Lana del Rey.

Not because she exudes mystery or because her nose is strange-looking, but because you said she was your favorite, perfect, and beautiful.

I remember the precise moment. You were making a right onto Newport Avenue and she came on the radio and you came out with that shit. I said that was strange because she wasn’t all that interesting. What I was really thinking is I look nothing like her. I am nothing like her. Since then, I have been jealous.

I used to like a few of her songs. So usually when I hear her voice your name pops into my head and I change the song real quick. Ever since then I blame her for our gradual realization that your idea of love and my idea of love are vastly different. I blame her for your terror of commitment and for my relentless insecurity. I blame her for past ghosts which we both pretend aren’t there but cannot outrun. I blame her for the time I cried lying beside you.

I also blame her for the times you made me shriek with laughter and when you played with my hair. I blame her ass for making me feel comfortable and open and vulnerable once again with someone. I blame her for showing me that liking someone doesn’t have to hurt. I blame her for not hating or regretting you, because you took my weak heart and gave it life when I needed it the most. You showed me that I can, and will, move on from the deepest of pains. Despite your faults and despite the outcome, you are a king amongst men, and few that I know compare.

So sometimes, when a Lana song starts, I turn it up and let it play.