This is how you love her. Pull her close. Relax her mind and take her wrist.
This is how you do. Notice her hair and play like a child.
Make her lips your home. Study her lashes, the thick and thin and softness.
Crash into her. Crash into her at the speed of light.
Be gentle and rip her soul. Witness how she smile like a flower.
Trace the dimples of her back and feed her. She is energy.
Feed her your fire until you’re nothing more than cinder and she has flames pouring through her ribcage.
She will need it. God, how she’ll need it.
Look beyond her imperfections and compliment her.
Make her calm like Annabeth. Your hands are devils and her skin is an angel.
You forget that she lost her wings and she’s broken, sometimes.
Other times it’s clearer. Haunt her. Never let her go.
Learn her. Know why she’s silent.
Even when you worry about how she kisses you and she chokes.
About how she shoves you against the wall and pulls you against herself,
bites you until your lips bleed and then doesn’t speak for two days.
Her attitude is an unmade bed, its messy but you’ll love her for it.
There are worse kinds of scars. These days she disappears often.
Slips away when she thinks you won’t notice. She hide under the tables. And she eats salad.
Some days you wake up at 2AM and you don’t find a text back from her.
Be disappointed but go to her. Speak to her. Go.
Buy a beer and sit on the floor with her until the crying stops.
You don’t have to say anything. Hug her and be sorry. Run your hand in circles around her back.
Let her cry with her trembling fingertips.
Sleep on the floor and don’t let her go.
In the morning you’ll see her eyes swollen, buy her a guitar.
She’s a phoenix, she’s a musician. She will break her strings.
When she digs her fingernails into your arms and drags the pain from her throat scream by scream, let her.
She’ll burn herself down over and over and rebuild, start again.
Marry her ashes, marry her yesterdays and todays and tomorrows.
She will always be the same, but she won’t, but she will.
She yells at you on your third date and says you don’t know her, slams the door and disappear.
She’s in tears on the bathroom floor and she turns the shower on so no one can hear her.
She’ll cry herself to sleep. She comes out the next morning and pretends not to care.
Kiss her then. Hold her by the back of her neck and by the wrist and kiss her.
It won’t make the hurting stop but she’ll love you for it.
Take her to a thousand different places.
Tell her that yes, this is enough.
Take pictures and post it on Instagram. Be proud of her. She is yours.
Some nights she crawls in bed with you.
She lets you curl an arm around her and tug her closer until the hair on the back of her head tickles your collarbone.
Sometimes she clings to the front of your shirt and breaths into the hollow at your throat and you can’t keep yourself from shivering.
But when she’s gone in the morning, close your eyes.
You think how it aches so much to not be able to love her entirely, but be patient.
She is the survivor of a long, cold winter. She is barreling through the dark.
But she is looking. She will find you.
You will be found. Say Thank you and buy her an Ice Cream.
Plan a date and be lost with people. Swing around the current.
Throw open every atlas you own, roll out the maps you’ve followed for a thousand years.
And she leaves you again. You alone on the train.
Your heart breaks at how much dust has settled on them.
You cry and you power weep. Ache but miss her.
By then you’ll miss the world until the pain takes you.
You party and you go home. Cover your face with your hands.
When you finally cry because you can’t help it, she finds you.
She maneuvers carefully across your charted floor and holds your head in her lap and tells you that there are thunderstorms in her chest too.
And you’re both relieved, because for the first time, she gives you her raw secrets and maybe it’s because she finally understands that she isn’t broken alone.
You will unwind her now, slowly.
She’ll run with you. She’ll be crazy over you. She’ll miss you before she blinks.
Free you butterflies. Feel the Zoo inside you.
It won’t be the same, but it will be good.
You’re not the same, but you can still love her.
You deserve a chance and it will be brilliant.
Pray for you. Pray for her. Pray.
Find a dictionary. Study.
Memorize the definition of the word love in a thousand different languages.
When all the definitions seem nowhere near enough, tell her you love her.
Now forget them.
Love is better than all of those things.
Feed her your fire.
And she will need you. God, how she’ll need you.
God, how much she’ll love you then, only then.