Unreciprocated Valentine


It’s just too hard to forget you.

You were everything to me,

and to deny myself proves nothing.

I love you–

but what “love” can that be?

You are not my friend, my brother,

my acquaintance, nor, obviously, my lover.

I do not understand

this thing I feel–I cannot comprehend.

It simmers beneath the surface,

and it scares me, for I have no name to give it.

It “feels” like love, it “looks” like love,

but it cannot be.

I no longer care if you notice me,

and I don’t pretend you do.

I care more for you, that you’re doing ok,

that you’re happy.

I no longer feel the butterflies,

but I still enjoy spending time with you.

Is this friendship?

No, it’s far too strong for that.

Is this affection?

Perhaps, but it doesn’t sit well.

It’s not love– it’s not selfish enough.

It scares me.

I love you–

but what does that mean?

[Almaty, Kazakhstan, on February 14, 2010]

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