She inspires me from afar. There have to be countries between us.
I eliminate her edges that burn me down and think of her drive.
What makes her relentless, tall and intimidating.
I dehumanise her in order to love her.
But then I can’t because I cut her in half.
Refuse the whole of her like a disease.
No, I’d die by her side, loving her wholly.
I admire her in silence, from my bed.
From a distance, without words and sounds.
Without admitting it.
I’d betray myself because with me next to her
She becomes a downward force and I
An invisible half-formed girl
Before a blind and superficial audience.
I’d drown myself in comparisons,
She, on the receiving end of glory and acknowledgement,
Me suffering, unseen, neglected, defamed, my words
Degraded to burnt snowflakes.
The smiling faces radiating back at her,
The pity and alien shame firing back at me.
I can’t remember who initiated this double-edged disaster.
How something pure became so rotten.
How love had never been love.
Friendship embodied by silence and reproach, envy and repression.
I could only become a woman without her.
I found myself leaving her behind.
We clung to one another to survive.
The detachment from our fathers.
The harmed lives of our mothers.
The dysfunctions of boys that would never become men.
And yet I think of her, an ideal that I transfixed in my mind
To keep her alive in my heartbeat despite all the fractures
And shackles on my wrists from a past that belongs to us both
In so many perspectives that we both have been blind at some point.
“Saudade” by José Ferraz de Almeida Júnior (1850-1899)