You Taught Me How to Count

It is in waiting that I learnt how to count;

how many stops there are to our station

how many spins the ball makes before the page refreshes

how many seconds it takes to drive through the tunnel I hate

and how many breaths I must wait before telling another piece of fiction.

 

It is in waiting that I learnt how to count;

The rings on your fingers when you’re late

the moles and sunspots on your face

the notes in your wallet at the end of the month

and the guilt-drenched, predictable poems you wrote about me

when you think you’ve gone too far about your own agonies.

 

You taught me that not all countdowns start with the number one

because when you’ve lost count

you’ve got to make do and keep composed

and produce a prose every week or two

like our colleagues do

making sure they meet their deadlines

till they become our date nights

and lettered fake lines become real lines-

 

I wish I didn’t learn counting from you.

 

You taught me that it’s alright to keep talking

keep teasing back and forth

it’s called progress if we don’t regress

you said this was a good sign

since we’re in no mess, no stress

but I guess they weren’t good enough signs for you.

 

Although numbers are infinite

you might remember that patience isn’t my greatest merit

And I’ve been counting for too long

that I’ve forgotten what it’s like to not take note of the seconds that pass

Always anticipating, always on the edge for what’s going to happen next

but all that ever came was the sound of

empty promises exchanged, new beginnings began

yet we still lost count

and we learnt to rebound

You taught me how to count

even when I didn’t have it in me.

 

You knew it all along

that I didn’t have it in me

and still

you made me

count.

 

Those lessons proved to be very valuable to me now

though I didn’t see it then

It’s formed a benchmark, a standard for me,

You made me a counter,

it’s like a fighter but better

I’m out before it gets over

I count to numb the pain of waiting

Such is my curse of loving.

 

It is in waiting that I learnt how to count;

how many stops there are to our station

how many spins the ball makes before the page refreshes

how many seconds it takes to drive through the tunnel I hate

and how many breaths I must wait before telling another piece of fiction.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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