These days, every conversation feels like goodbye,
full of final confessions and “weres” instead of “ares.”
We tug and tug to peel back layer after layer
after layer after layer of wrapping paper.
Like the presents I used to wrap for you on your birthday.
It was just a silly competition back then.
On your 19th birthday, I wrapped your fuzzy socks,
because no one had ever bought you fuzzy socks,
in seven layers of Sesame Street wrapping paper.
On my next birthday, the book you bought me
was wrapped in twelve.
We don’t follow the rules anymore.
Now, we tear the wrapping paper off.
Hoping that somehow what’s underneath it all will be enough.
Hoping that what’s underneath it all will change everything.
Hoping that what’s underneath it all will mean we can stay.
But I think deep down we
both know that once we open the package
it will be empty.
Because while our words
aren't empty, we are.