the maze

I understand how and why
you have this labyrinth of thorns
around your heart. it’s to keep
you safe, innocent
while savagery is inflicted upon your suitors
as they hack and slash
at the cruel, cutting brambles,
dodge and duck the sharp-toothed
greenery, hunt and search through these dead ends
in the ramble surrounding your true
feelings. it’s to make sure
that only the most worthy
and determined would-be lover
gets through to your hidden and
vulnerable, secret soul. Sleeping Beauty
would be jealous of this spread.

I get it; we all have our own defenses –
sometimes the way looks clear,
even inviting
right until the moment one falls into
a moat full of angry crocodiles –
that we use to see how badly
someone really wants us.

I think part of you is hoping
I’ll give up if the going gets tough
enough, because
this will prove you right
in rejecting my advances. if I
was not worthy
to begin with, then your own courage
forever remains
untested.

what you don’t understand is
how my own armored knight of a heart
dearly loves a challenge,
how having to fight for something
only makes me want it
that much more,
how the single best way
to get me to try harder
is to say unequivocally
that it can’t be done.

so if
you really want
to discourage me
all you have to do, dear,
is invite me in.

Published by

R. Brookes McKenzie

what fresh hell is this

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