YOU DO. SO I DO., C.L. Brenton

You Do. So I do.
by C.L. Brenton

I do not care about pressed napkins, dusted pianos or three-course meals. But you do, so I do. You do not care about harmonies, staccato rhythm, or poetry. But I do. I do.

You cannot say a million things and I cannot say a million more. We tiptoe across each other like lovers in the nighttime. Like poets uttering only innuendo, only metaphor. But we are not lovers and we are not poets.

I was born of you and you were born of me. An umbilical cord stretches across states and time zones connecting two bodies, each a puppet puppeteered by the other.

I do not care about quilted toilet paper, matching upholstery or crystal stemware, but you do, so I do. You don’t care about lines on a canvas, the difference between dawn and dusk, or cheeseburgers that taste even better when you eat them in the car. But I do. I do.

You are a frustrating reminder that you can’t love exactly everything about any one person. You must pick what you love. Discard the rest. Even though your daggers are sharper than the rest. And they stay with me like a cloud of gnats, biting over and over until I get used to their perpetual sting.

You are the Crate & Barrel to my thrift store cacophony, you are the dust free, grout-less tile, matching pillow case nightmare to my rug-free, scratched paint, sweaty dream.

What do you want but for the rest of us to be like you? What do you want but for the mess to stay outside, and the dreams to stay gray and in bed where they belong?

We are led leveled and hard boned and different. We are different but on a spectrum from A to Zed, from high to lowest of low we are the same. We are from the same street corner. Literally. We read the same books, we dated the same man, we loved the same movies, we cried the same tears.

We grew up together, even if I’m not entirely sure I know what that means. Now, there are not enough seats on your prim couch for one more me, and there is not enough wild in my world for one more you.

I sink back into pillows and you perch on a thin wire frame. And because you care about pressed napkins and euro shams and curtains that close, I do. I do.

C. L. Brenton is a Los Angeles based author who loves to write about the intricacies of everyday life. She is a staff writer at The American Genius, and her work has been published broadly in literary magazines across the globe. For everything C. L. Check out her website at
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About barkingsycamores 183 Articles
Barking Sycamores is a literary journal entirely edited and operated by queer neurodivergent people of color. We publish poetry, artwork, short fiction (beginning with Issue 3), creative nonfiction (beginning with Issue 8), and hybrid genre work (beginning with Issue 9) by emerging and established neurodivergent writers as well as essays on neurodiversity and literature and book reviews (beginning with Issue 10).

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