To all the boys I’ve loved before,
To all the graves I’ve dug – and more,
To all the clay I’ve shaped,
Reshaped and shaped again.
To all the ways I thought I’d changed,
To all the pots I thought I’d made,
To all the cracks that let in light,
To all the tracks I’ve stepped at night,
And all the roads not taken then.
To all the parts of self I’ve changed,
To be the one to make him stay,
To be the one so he won’t stray.
To all the boys and all the pain,
To shape reshape and shape again.
To all the starts I thought I’d made,
To all the trust that they repaid
With all the barbs and all the hurt
And all the silent, silent graves
Of all the loves I thought I’d won.
To all the novels, all begun,
To all the balls of yarn I’ve turned
Into the flesh, the flesh, the word
The word made flesh and flesh made word again.
To all the first times, first lines, first kiss,
First miss, another miss and miss again.
To all the catches that I’ve dropped,
To all the stitches that would knot.
To bloody messes of my face,
To bleeding hands and ulcered feet,
And all the ways I tried to win his love.
To all the times I lost one glove.
To all the freezing damp and dirty plates,
To all the bloody awful dates,
To all the pubs and all the bistros where –
I touch and touch and touch my hair.
To all the times I thought I’d won,
To all the bloody work I’ve done
To make him stay.
To all the times I’d pray
To be delivered from this pain,
And now I’m on my knees again.
Oh make it, make it, make it stop,
I hear the ticking of the clock,
It draws me in,
It draws me home.
I search for him, and search again,
On all the sites and sights and trains,
On all the blasted heaths in rain,
And all the words, and all the cries,
How quick love jumps,
How soon love dies.
The sparrows sing in Greek again –
A different road. No: it’s the same,
The same road walked again, again.
And even though my feet are lame
The blackbird sings “Begin again.”
*2014. By Jenny Han. Young adult romance novel.