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If I Loved You Less by Anonymous

A variation on Jane Austen’s “If I loved you less, I might be able to talk about it more.”

If I loved you less,

I wouldn’t think of you as a star-child

glazed in the inky caress of space,

holding so tightly onto the things that make you extraterrestrial.

If I loved you less,

I wouldn’t spring from the planet like one half

of a binary star, searching for my twin only to nd your remains dusted on a million different planets, in a million different life forms.

If I loved you less,

I wouldn’t hear the crackle-pop of supernova

stirrings and think of the way your voice echoed

profundity like a wisp of heat reaching out to the deepest cold.

If I loved you less,

I wouldn’t ride white dwarf echoes

across the Milky Way to nd you, huddled

in frosted whites, in some unknown corner of the galaxy.

If I loved you less,

I’d be able to talk your body without making you

more than you are, without sweeping up your blustering blood and replacing it with starlight and the deepest shade of vastness.

But you’re dying, and if I loved you less,

I would be able to reconcile the penny-sized hole in your heart

as a mechanism of God. But I harbor a star-shaped love— the kind that burns and burns, implodes, rusts away and simmers until its out.