To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before

Freedom;
it sticks in my mouth
like caramels,
like popcorn kernels,
like white bread.
I can’t swallow it down right,
can’t clear it,
can’t cough it up,
but I know it isn’t
the right word.
Freedom;
I get stuck hearing it
like church bells.

Freedom;
it isn’t
what you think it is —
this is never what you think it is.
Freedom;
I’m never really going to
take off these shackles,
the ones that chain my tits,
my cunt,
my hips
and lips
and ass.

Freedom;
you think I’m talking about my
voice but I’m talking about all the
choices you have
that I don’t.
Freedom;
I am more myself
than I have ever been,
in realizing I don’t have to pick
between one
and another.
I can have
both. I can be
both. I am
both. I have always been
both.

Freedom;
all these new beginnings
leave the taste
of fresh paint behind them,
and clean carpets,
and a reminder of cold pizza
and warm beer,
chocolate cherry ice cream,
and clove cigarettes.
Freedom;
I am so much lighter, now,
so much fatter
and happier.
Freedom;
did you know
your affection terrified me?
That I didn’t know
how to accept it
for what it was?
That still,
sometimes
I doubt you?
That those doubts are
probably not your fault,
but
will probably
never quite die.
It’s ok — I suppose it was
inevitable, that someone should actually
love me for me.
Statistics,
right?

Freedom;
age comes with
a remarkable set of powers —
each wrinkle
and spot
and blemish
are a camouflage
against the predators
who only desire
young flesh.
Freedom;
when I think of you, sometimes I actually smile.
Freedom;
when you’re dead and gone,
which I truly hope
is before me,
I will only grieve the time I wasted
on you.
Freedom;
my voice is beautiful
in my own ears —
you won’t ever hear it.

Freedom;
god but I am beautiful
in my own eyes,
finally.

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3 Responses to To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before

  1. rienan says:

    This is powerful. And the Freedom’s are all sorta different and resonate with different thoughts or flavors in my mind. Love it!

  2. Trent Lewin says:

    I don’t know what change happened here or why… but you’re one of the most beautiful people I know and let me simply express my love for your words again. You, Jones, leave nothing on the table. Nothing.

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