Our alliance was effortless. He was addicted to dirty words and orgasms. Dirty words and orgasms, yes, most of us love those. He loved those to distraction. I was addicted to fantasy. Specifically, the fantasy of him as Ted, myself as Assia. Maybe without the suicide. We would love each other forever, in the lovely abstract. There would be no sweat no blood no tears, only copious amounts of invisible cum, cum our tongues would never lick up. His life was sturdy and sensible. I don’t know why he had to drink to get through it. My life was sloppy and silly. I drank when he asked me to. “Get really fucking dirty,” he wrote. “Say the nastiest things. Take a picture of yourself drinking from the bottle.” Every whore loves an adoring audience. Whore? Yes. He paid me with affirmation and hearts…<3 ❤ ❤ ad infinitum. I believed I was much greater than three. We died like all lovers die, separated by oceans and prairies and gross inconvenience. You want someone there to scratch what itches, to lull you to sleep with industrious plans, to do lists that could almost be songs in certain light. In a different version he comes to me by moonlight though hell should bar the way. I am cherished oxygen. He could not live without me if he wanted to. Hollywood could not frame it any better. Two brilliant lunatics so deep true blue in love they hide from the world inside the belly of a whale. Even God can’t find them. In this version his wife calls to remind him to pick up ice at the store and I keep my lips sewn shut because he loves his daughter. The photographs and poems are dog scratches on a locked door. The dog learns the door will not open. The dog finds a new way to keep out of the rain.