I will love you as misfortune loves orphans,
as fire loves innocence
and as justice loves to sit
and watch while everything goes wrong.
I will love you as a battlefield loves young men
and as peppermints love your allergies,
and I will love you as the banana peel loves the shoe of a man
who was just struck by a shingle falling off a house.
I will love you as a drawer loves a secret compartment,
and as a secret compartment loves a secret,
and as a secret loves to make a person gasp,
I will love you until all such compartments are discovered and opened,
and until all the secrets have gone gasping into the world.
I will love you until all the codes and hearts have been broken
and until every anagram and egg has been unscrambled.
I will love you until the bird hates a nest
and the worm hates an apple,
and until the apple hates a tree
and the tree hates a nest,
and until a bird hates a tree
and an apple hates a nest,
although honestly I cannot imagine that last occurrence no matter how hard I try.
I will love you as we grow older,
which has just happened,
and has happened again,
and happened several days ago, continuously,
and then several years before that,
and will continue to happen as the spinning hands of every clock
and the flipping pages of every calendar mark the passage of time,
except for the clocks that people have forgotten to wind
and the calendars that people have forgotten to place in a highly visible area.
I will love you as we find ourselves farther and farther from one another,
where we once we were so close that we could slip the curved straw,
and the long, slender spoon, between our lips and fingers respectively.
I will love you until the chances of us running into one another slip from slim to zero,
and until your face is fogged by distant memory,
and your memory faced by distant fog,
and your fog memorized by a distant face,
and your distance distanced by the memorized memory of a foggy fog.
I will love you no matter where you go
and who you see,
no matter where you avoid
and who you don’t see,
and no matter who sees you avoiding where you go.
I will love you no matter what happens to you,
and no matter how I discover what happens to you,
and no matter what happens to me as I discover this,
and now matter how I am discovered after what happens to me as I am discovering this.