She was a mountain; a great crush of rock and snow.
The boys didn’t know how to love her. They were used to the warm — to the soft. Girls whose bodies were bodies; who didn’t stay up at night making metaphors out of their bones. She wanted with the transparency of ice; her feelings swam like fish to be caught if only the boys were willing to bring their saws and huts and gloves — but none were.
That only came later, with age and experience, when beauty faded and folded like old paper roses. And still, some chased youth like it could cure their crows feet; like the snap and pop of chewing gum could cover the creak of thirty, then forty, then forty-five.
She would not forgive it.
At nineteen she knew more about hate than she did about sex. Wrote letters to strangers who told her, It is the nobility in which you wear your scars that is so terribly pretty. They knew nothing about her, or the dirt under her nails, or the skin that separated and came back together again. It was not magic, or romance. They wrote about broken beer bottles like they were telling her it was okay to break. Her shoulders, their great expanse, their rocky truth. The crumbling. The holding. The strength and the beauty. She knew nothing about breaking.
She never would.