I Do Not Drink From Lethe. I Do Not Look To Ithaca.

I liked that you liked me. What was it you liked? Tell me. Yes. Again. As you bite your lower lip and try to keep your mouth from going dry.

Your eyes make me ache. They are like sea glass.

I am embarrassed at how domesticated we’ve both become, you more so than I. Much more fun when you crawled across my body like a cat, limbs long and hot, your pale skin smelling of the liqueur of your perfume and buttery champagne, as sweet as summer. My sheets smelled of you for days. You didn’t get dressed until well past 2 and I enjoyed every moment of your smooth, soft skin mingling with the air, with the linen, with my touch. I wanted to know every square inch of you.

I liked how you smiled when I kissed your arms; when I kissed your neck.

Lover.

Had we continued past a single night, we might have become lovers. We might have written a mythology, signed it with lightning and sweat and pretended it was something new.

I, your troubled writer. You, my dark muse.

(My love is as a fever, longing still)

But if we had, then I would not have this. I would only have you and you would only have me and we would soon forget how the other’s hands felt, how our fingertips once touched, how the night was blue and gold.

The waters of forgetfulness surround Elysium. We drink from them before we cast away our paradises.

Then I would not have you and then you would not have me. And we would have quaffed the black wine of Lethe after our thirst for each other was satiated and disappointed and damned.

I would not have kept you as I have kept you: a pulsebeat steady. A silver and onyx shudder. A wine-fresh sigh. A wind.

I would not have you tucked away in a heart’s sanctuary, your hair fanned out like a dark puddle upon the pillows, your lipstick worn pale by kisses, your breasts beneath the cool sail of the bed, your jeans peeled free in a hot storm of hands and caresses and legs, left in a soft tangle at the foot of the bed.

The storm subsides and here you lie where it is always 3 am; where I am always your troubled writer and you are always my dark muse in a dream I wish I could disappear into, in a dream of an unfound river, in a dream that will not fade, sophisticated and feral, still hungry for another night.

(This originally appeared on www.ksanthony.com)