How to love a stained man


If you were to ask him about his port-wine stain
He would tell you it was a burn

And if you were to ask him how he got that burn 
He would tell you he was a hero in his hometown 

And if you inquired further
He would tell you his hometown
Was nestled in the crevice between two large breasted mountains

And then
he would not be lying

He was breastfeed 
And his mother’s name means “Queen”
And she always taught him she was as much

If you watch him in the rain 
And notice that it looks like he’s shaking fire off his hands
He’ll tell you he was only dancing

Don’t believe him

He does set fire to his arms sometimes
Especially when it’s raining
If only to see if he can defy the clouds long enough 
To mark his skin just a little

His mother always taught him she was a queen 
And so he touches women so delicately
They never notice until he’s painted flowers 
All over them

Then he burns his arms
So they’ll tend to him
And pay attention more to those marks
Than his port-wine stain
Or the weeds he’s watering on their backs

If you take him back to bed

Do not comment 
On his port wine stain

Always thank him 
For the weeds on your back 

Even as those tendrils tangle 
Tell him 
He’s getting things right
Don’t say “for once
Do not say 
“for once”

When you finally decide to remove the weeds from your back
Do not do it with a rake
Do not attack them 
Do not mistake them for malicious 
Think of them as dandelions 

The beauty just spreads too quickly 

If you take him to bed after removing the weeds
You’ve made a mistake 
He will notice
And it will break him

Then he will go out into the rain 
Setting fire to his arms 
He will notice puddles for the first time
And reflections 
And his port wine stain 

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