When I fall in love, it comes out screaming.
You say that you’re no good for me,
and I smile and kiss you anyway.
With seventeen years in between,
you couldn’t blame my mother for
grabbing out the shotgun,
Don’t you dare touch my baby with your iron paws,
I know what happens when girls love men like you.
Of course, we still sneak out after school,
your hand in mine, knuckles white against the steering wheel.
You tell me I should leave in a voice like whiskey
and I murmur of course, of course
as you teach me things I never knew
about my sixteen-year-old skeleton
and the muscles that strap it down.
When you light up a cigarette,
you warn me to never smoke.
It kills your lungs, but you fall in love.
I’m not lying, then, when I say
that you are my most beautiful habit.
When the cops come the next day, I am in your bed,
young enough to be your child.
My mother’s got my head in her hands so that I will not try
to tear the handcuffs off and kiss you one last time.
Before you leave, shamefaced and thirty-three,
I was the last thing you got to see.
This was never beautiful to me, you say”
As far as habits go, we were only ever ugly.