Perfect Hatred

In the cracks of the sidewalks between the corner bars is where 
we discovered perfect hatred
it swirled within  the music billowing hauntingly through open shutters 
past neighborhood dogs wagging tails behind picket fences their eyes intent on finding mischief in our footsteps

and the hatred wasn’t anger,  but a perfect sorrow that pools in the street after a 
spring rain with nothing to hold  or contain it 
the kind of hatred the sky must feel when a gaze from below surpasses any 
shade of blue it has ever projected

we walked slowly and unintentionally into the past lives of ourselves before you
stopped suddenly still to face me 
the earth held its breath 
your lips whispered soft velvet words 
“I hate you”
the earth released a sigh
it was then I knew you loved me .

Nikki Lockhart

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