Is it embarrassing if I admit that 

you’re giving me arrhythmia again?

It’s humiliating. I’m relapsing. 

I’m running, 

and I’m so tired of running. 

I lie down in the grass and I sleep.
It doesn’t make any sense, because usually,

I’m not good at running or falling asleep.

I never did cross country when

I was in high school. All I knew 

was how to be jealous of the boys and girls

who did cross country in high school. 

I stayed up all night

wishing I was like Izzy 

who did cross country

in high school. I am not like Izzy, and I need 

to stop being jealous of

Izzy. My happy birthday wishes are not the same as

Izzy’s. My hellos are not the same as Izzy’s. The

breakfast croissants I bring you

are not the same as Izzy’s.

My insecurities are killing me. I strangle, 

suffocate, squeeze the love out of people

until they’re gone. I’m an 

anaconda, and I don’t want to be an 

anaconda. I want to be human. 

I want us to be normal again. 

I want us back again. 

You forgot to say

hi to me when I walked past you

on College Street today, and I 

shouldn’t be thinking about it,

but I’m thinking about it. 

I’m thinking about it, 

and it’s giving me arrhythmia. 

My health textbook says that arrhythmia is an

irregular rhythm of the heart, but 

I feel it all over me. In my forehead where

I want to feel your cracked lips and 

in my stomach where my intestines twist

like anacondas when I see

you. I am nervous. No, I’m not. 

I need to do better.

I need to do better.

I need to stop strangling, 

suffocating, squeezing the trust out of people

until they’re gone. I’m an 

anaconda, and I don’t want to be an 

anaconda. I want to be human 


Thinking about you

makes my heart run, run, run 

and other times, I’m so tired 

I can’t move. Move. Move. 

I’m in love with 

somebody I can’t have. I’m jealous.

Archaeologists would call me a boy, 

historians would say that I’m a bad liar,

and my heart would say that I’m

yours. This love is killing me, but I can’t let go.

I coil, I coil, I coil, 

you coil, you coil, you coil

until we both can’t breathe. We have no venom, 

but we are toxic for each other. I can’t let go. 

You’re smart. You let go, 

and now I miss you. 

I miss you. Can’t you tell that

I miss you? 

What in the bloody hell did I do?

To have myself see the universe in your eyes but

have you see absolutely nothing in mine anymore?

Fuck you. Fuck you and fuck your friends

that I still love. I need to stop saying fuck.

I don’t mean any of it. 

12:48 a.m., 

1:48 a.m., 

2:48 a.m.,

God, you’re such a monster. 

I’m such a monster. 

I hope you know that you’re a 

monster. I hope I know that I’m 

a monster. You better know that you’re a 

monster. You better know that I 

tried everything to make us work.

It’s not my fault that I like you.

It’s not my fault, but it's my fault. 

I’m jealous, I’m angry, and I need to change. 

I play anaconda poker, and I strangle, suffocate, squeeze 

my feelings with my own insecurities 

until they’re all dry and dead. My pen is 

dry and I have no words left except

I still like you. I’m embarrassed that I 

still like you, and I can’t help it. 

Teach me how to be pretty enough for you 


Teach me how to be smart enough for you 


Teach me how to stop wanting to be pretty or smart

for you. Please, it hurts. Teach me how to forget. 

Anacondas have a hard time forgetting

— we swallow memories whole and we digest 

them for the rest of our lives. I’ve waited for you

for a thousand years. I’ve wanted us to work for 

a thousand years. I’ve liked you for a thousand 

years, and I’ll wait another hundred

thousand years. 

I can’t forget. 

I can’t forget. 

I can’t forget. I can’t repair myself. 

The chambered ventricles of my heart 

are made of inexpensive wood and there are now

maggots wriggling in the holes. 

My heart is shipped and bought from the department store

and it’s caught on a fire 

so bright and blue and blinding

that the flames look like seawater. I can only watch

as my muscle burns, burns, burns in the salt. 

Or is it smoke? A summer barbecue with your dad

in the heart of the concrete jungle? New York City 

reminds me of a dying Amazon. 

I don’t know anymore. I can’t move. Move. Move. 

In moments like these, I cannot tell the difference

between fire and water,

I cannot tell the difference between you and me.

I’m too tired to think. I can only stand here and sleep

and let my feelings burn as I ship my heart 

down the river like its cargo. I sink the 

ship. It’s an oil spill,

and this one’s really, really bad. 

I don’t know how to stop. 

I’m in love with the way you talk.

And the way you care for your siblings.

And the way you walk when you’re drunk. 

And the way you bop your head when you 

listen to rap. I’m in love with the way you hugged me

like an anaconda. I was dying, but I wanted more. 

I still want more. I want more.

God, you’re such a monster

but I can’t move on. Your smile makes me sweat, and

I remember the way I’d always brush my teeth twice 

when you asked me to hang out. The fake watches and

gold and chains I’d borrow from friends 

to wear so you’d like me more because my feelings were not written

for Old Money ears. 

I still remember you, I still remember you.

My ears remember the exact frequency and color 

of your baritone voice.

My little Frankenstein head still pictures you and I

together, I want to

wake up next to you. I want your flannel. 

I want to stand beneath your blue umbrella. 

I want you back, I want you all over me,

in me, 

around me like an anaconda, 

but if I were you, I’d stay away. 

I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I know I’m not okay.

Remember that night when the sky was as black as 

your leather shoes and I told you that I wanted to be a
cardiothoracic surgeon? I find it funny now. I find it hilarious now. 

Shut up. Stop laughing. 

Only crazy people find this shit funny. 

I don’t care. I can’t help but laugh. I keep laughing, because

isn’t it funny that I’ve always wanted to dedicate 

the rest of my life to fixing human hearts, 

when I don’t even know where 

my own is? 


Wait here. 

Wait right here, okay? Don’t go


I’m going to fetch it right now.

I’m going to dive to the bottom of my dirty river,

and I’m going to stupidly give my heart to you again. 

I’m going to find it and give myself to you. 

I always come back to