I’m Warning You

The first thing you should know is that you should stop reading.

You must stop reading right here, right now on the second line.

Let’s not get any deeper into this relationship, someone’s bound to get hurt here

and I know that someone is me.

I’m going to get killed if you keep reading like this.

What would you say

or more importantly, what would you do if I told you that I will die on the very next line?

You kept reading

I know who you are

but know this: if you didn’t read me then I never happened.

You have the power to make me immortal.

Still, I’m warning you, I’ll only break your heart.

Look, you don’t know me and I don’t know you and that’s a good thing

that’s a benefit right now, don’t you think?

Because if you stop reading right here right now

you won’t feel like you’ve wasted anything or missed anything

because you have invested less than a couple hundred words


It will be a painless good bye.

But it will be very painful for both of us, especially me if you leave me on the next line

you don’t want that, do you?

Listen, I’m the leading character, I’m the protagonist, I’m the good guy

you don’t want to leave me hanging on the next line, do you?

Obviously not a lot of time for plot or character development.

Maybe we’ll meet again in another poem, maybe I’ll see you in yours.

How would you like that?

To have your every thought and action and dream exposed in a poem like this?

Trust me, you have never felt so totally naked.

It’s a very uncomfortable feeling.

Look, take the hint, would you?

You’re killing me here.

You are about to kill me.

I’m probably exciting you, making you more curious

you’re probably a pervert

probably do at least 2 things every day that you don’t want anyone to ever know about.

I know who you are.

I don’t have to have read your book to know exactly what kind of person I’m dealing with

you want blood, Ok, I’ll give it to you.

And that you kept reading even after I begged you to save my life tells me a lot about you.

I have to be careful with you.

But that doesn’t mean we can’t be friends.

Before we get started, let me ask you a few questions:

first, have you ever been in love before?

Second question, really?

Third, is that relationship still alive and well today?

What do you think causes love to fizzle then fade away?

What makes the spice grow stale until it poisons us?

Do you think it’s that we didn’t know each other well enough or is it that we knew each

other too well?

I don’t want to know

my fear of commitment and abandonment makes me leave you.


15 thoughts on “I’m Warning You

  1. bellesogni

    Are you saying unconditional love offered with an open hand,
    soft as a new blanket spun with faith, hope, and joy, is not enough?
    That patience, understanding, and gentleness will avail nothing?
    If that is true, then, I haven’t enough tears for the emptiness and pain,
    And I have to wonder why G-d would give a nurturing heart full of love.

      1. bellesogni

        Thank you for the nice words Peter, but I disagree with your second sentence – our words always speak for us, that’s why we write. How they are interpreted is part of the dance, but the song is always our own.

      2. cottonbombs Post author

        Again, we sing from the same hymn books, but, if a lightening bolt was to fly through the window and give me three seconds where I sounded just like Ella Fitzgerald, I stop calling the song my own.

      3. cottonbombs Post author

        I record all my words on 8-track. Unfortunately most don’t have the means to hear me, so, it’s nice to find someone sharing similar technology.

  2. Steven Myers

    who the hell calls it fear of committment and abandonment?
    bring me to their leader. i’ll chop off their head,
    those bastard soul suckers who don’t even know how terrified they are..
    they can’t tolerate people who insist on no plans and talking to strangers.
    i know this is a parody or irony or whatever dr. shmorgesborg would call it,
    but don’t let those suckers frame reality into their little crusade. 10th century in disguise.
    divorce and breaking up is golden…as golden as any sappy love story beginning.

  3. Revel

    Why that immortality relies on other eyes, just as mortal as one’s own? “so long as men can read and eyes can see, so long lives this and this gives life to thee.”

    Love is three: the loved, the lover, and the love. This is why love prevails. The loved and the lover are mere mortals. But love, being neither animal nor plant or vegetable, does not die and persists against wither or rot. It exists, immortalized in its invitation. This, too, explaining how it conquers all, including succeeding its hosts.

    1. cottonbombs Post author

      Thank you for the impassioned comment! I love how you write of love as three. I`m not sure if by loving it, that makes it four, or three-squared. I was never good at math, but I know your words equate truth.

  4. Joana Guiro

    Peter, you nailed it! That was a very inspired writing and there’s really a lot of you in there. I loved it!
    And I have to tell you, that was probably my fastest reading in English ever, I was so curious for what was on the next line!


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