Torn strips of paper, rough-edged, imperfect
as a requirement for beauty. Weave them
into each other, layer them like love.
Listen to them rustle, edge against edge,
or crumple, twisting around fingertips,
trapping them with trust. Whatever they say,
the words are as mumbled as memories.
The jagged margin where they were once one
began to erode at the instant of
separation. Raw, distressed, folded down,
they no longer fit together just so,
with the precision of a dovetailed joint.
They whisper secrets they can’t remember,
fragments of a jigsaw puzzle the mind
remaps into something new, the way nerves
reach around damage to build a new path.
It’s different. “It could be better,” one says,
then, “It could be worse,” the other replies.