The Next Time

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I promised myself that the next time would be different
That I wouldn’t wrap myself up in wanting to be perfect
In expecting that it wouldn’t all fall apart
That I wouldn’t expect good credit, fidelity and employment
I said I’d be more open, giving, content to just exist in love

I promised that I would not jump into something new
As easily as young girls slide between double dutch ropes
Just because I was afraid of being alone
I have read the Nikki Giovanni and Maya Angelou poems
So I know the difference between lonely and alone

I promised that I wouldn’t fear failure
anymore, with my fingers tightly crossed
I kept reminding myself
That it’s a part of life and love
Like fad diets, bad hair days and carbs

I promised to become a siren
By taking lessons from Badu
To figure out how to enchant and transform
My love
Into a force of nature

In the end,
The next time became just like
Every other time before it
I am flawed, solitary, but above all content
With being me

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