It seems to me
You never let go of hatred
But, hear me out:
You always clung to love.
We grew up in a place where plates flew
Where a kiss was followed by a yell
And a yell by a kiss
Where hate and love happened like one tree with two roots.
And so of course,
We tore each other’s hair out by the handful as we held hands on the street
Our kisses were followed by yells and our yells by kisses
We screamed and cried and bullied between the pet names
We made each other small and big
And to us, it was all the same.
And now we’re here, grown up,
And you, I think, still hate.
I have lost the how.
When I left home, I severed hatred like a black limb and cast it off
I spent years learning to wince away from anything that looked like anger
I never wanted to yell again.
You, the littler, wiser one
I think knew
That to cut down the trunk was to kill both roots.