18.08.05 - 4:44 p.m.

for the first time in my life, Josephine
March, Iím not mad at you for that
scene in the woods, for breaking poor
Laurieís heart, and though my twenty-
four years have been freckled with spontaneous
outbursts in response to the way you were
written, though even in your motherís house
I breathed you in and resented the readership
that forced a love interest, I have slammed
down your story on any number of surfaces
and retreated to kitchens for cups of tea, crossing
arms over stovetops and rising steam because, by
god, he loved you, would let you win every argument,
a sworn saint with a mop of hair and money to
keep you in india inkófingers black for the rest of
your life while his piano kept time with your
scratching and blotting. forgive me, Jo, for all
the years Iíve spent blaming you for his marriage
to that stuffy old Amy, assuming that Friedrich was
nothing more than a passť extension of your existentialist
leanings, European, older, poor, a middle finger in
the faces of young girls who like bloodhounds
followed your story in the papers
because I (finally) understand: you just
werenít in love and, unlike me, dear Jo,
my oldest friend,
you werenít afraid to admit it.



your one beauty!
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