To A Boy Who Was Never Mine

I fell in love,
when I was in pre-school,
four-years-old, five at most.
You were in the second grade,
three to four years my elder.
No big deal.
I still played with ants,
talking with them at length
as up the length of my arm they marched.
You climbed the monkey bars so effortlessly,
speechless as I watched you,
so strong.
So magnificent.

I think I was more inspired by you,
than infatuated with you.
At five I was only infatuated with cookies,
crayons, and caterpillars.
Come on, have you ever had a pet caterpillar?
Fuzzy little crawlers, then they cocoon,
and suddenly beautiful butterflies
seem to bloom. I could not understand then,
and I cannot fathom it now, how the butterfly
was ever the much less beautiful caterpillar.
I think it's a trick.
I thought it was a trick when you moved away.

I saw you one day,
but you were gone the next.
I looked everywhere I could,
which, at five, wasn't very many places.
You moved away, and to this day,
I still don't know where you went.
I don't know where you are,
but you unknowingly broke a little girl's heart.

Recently I was reading.
Did you know, elephants can truly die from a broken heart?
If their mate does, leaving them alone,
they actually will not care for themselves any longer.
No eating. No drinking. Nothing.
They simply refuse help from us.

Maybe we could learn something
from such magnificent creatures.
That maybe it's okay to have a broken heart sometimes.
It's best to let someone heal on their own.
But I am healed, I think,
so don't worry about me.

I do worry about you, though,
and I wanted to let you know
I have learned how to climb the monkey bars.
Swinging from one to the next effortlessly,
is one of the happiest feelings in my life,
and it makes me feel close to you again.
Wherever you are.
And I hope you have learned,
that ants are not as dirty as they seem,
and being a caterpillar isn't such an awful thing
once you've gained your wings.

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