an irish toast
vanessa nichols

Sweet sorrow is the call tomorrow
Do you love me like I love you
Or am I standing still beneath the darkened sky

I'm dead. Are you crying yet? No? Didn't think so. Not your game, right? No use crying over spilt milk and all that. 'Sides, we both know that I was spilt a long time ago. Just took till now for it all to trickle away.

I'm dead. Dead as in... dead. Not alive. No longer in the union. A kicked bucket. Dead. Well whoop-de-fucking-doo. Had to happen sooner or later, right? To be honest, I always thought it'd be sooner, but I guess B was having too much fun on the Life-Slayer-Death carousel to let anyone else have a turn. Tell the truth--you hoped for sooner too.

I'm dead. Just listen to all those champagne corks a-poppin'. I bet there's a lot of drunk people tonight, overdosing on those golden waterfalls. Crystal glasses all sparkling and raised high. Smash a couple, will you? Toss the crystal to the ground, grind the shards into dust, watch it all fade away. I'd like that. Pretend that it's me you're stepping on and, ten-to-one, you'll like it too.

I'm dead. No more sinning, no more contrition. I probably owe you a thousand or more apologies. I'm not sure how many, really. Guess that's why I'll never pay up. Can't cancel a debt if you don't know the price. But you'd know the correct number, wouldn't you? Probably got them all written down somewhere, a little tally card with my name across the top. A tick for every bruise, a cross for every cut. Did you bundle each group of five with a slash? I wonder. Is your tally card paper or flesh? I scarred you so nicely. Sorry.

I'm dead. We failed, you know? I failed you. You failed me. Bitter much? Nah. We were already screwed. Me more than you, of course. Already screwed and then we just screwed each other. Shame we never fucked, really. Probably would've fixed a lot of stuff. Course, it might've just fucked things up even further. Hindsight's got nothing on you and I except for never-did's and maybe-should-have's.

I'm dead. There was never any doubt that I rocked your watcher-world. Rocked, shattered, destroyed. No difference, no doubt. Question is--could I have made you tremble? 'Cause I've never done slow before. Never done soft. Never drawn fingernails across skin without wanting to leave blood. Never scraped teeth along flesh without needing to bite. Never threaded fingers through hair without anticipating the pull. Never felt warmth without aching for the cold. Never known desire, only lust. Never known passion, only hurt. Never known love, only hate.

Never known you.

Are you crying yet?

Yeah. Me neither.


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