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I remember when we’d talk fluidly for hours
about our favorite cereals, such silly things,
or the Saturday morning cartoons we’d watched
when we were both young
and (mostly) uncontaminated by the world
and its soon-awaiting corruptness.
Our relationship began as something magical,
or at least I thought so.
Deep down inside, I decided that what you needed, finally,
was real love for the first time in your life.
Someone just like me who would light a match so you could find your way.
So began what I deemed the necessary burden
of being battered, over and over, by you.
All in the name of fixing whatever was broken.
And I believed that you were fixable, damn it.
I was your princess in tarnished armor.
And when you didn’t call, for days,
I forgave you each time.
Then, when you informed me that you didn’t love me back, I consoled myself,
believing that you would—one day.
All I needed to do was try harder—to be your beacon.
I sprinkled upon you every ounce of love that I had to give.
Then, behold, the day came when you seemed to change.
And I thought finally all of my hard work had paid off.
You realized that I was all you’d ever needed and wanted—all along.
And I was beside myself with pride, for I had won at the game of love.
All it took was years of dedication, heartache, and never-ending hope.
What I didn’t realize was that it was all a subterfuge.
It wasn’t me that you loved, but what I could offer you.
A roof, easy sex, and the freedom to do what you wanted.
Because you knew, after so long, that I’d tolerate it.
I was never your princess, but your willing supply.