I’ve spoken before of my personal religion, which is actually a straight tequila night. I’ve spoken before of the stone under which I was born. This is not the same as living under a rock; it is in fact much colder. I have mortar in my hands. You want mortar in your chest. That’s what’s called an unintended side effect of the existence of walls.

These are the things that are true: the sting means it’s working; sweatpants are more comfortable than trying to be honest all the time; when someone asks if I know how fast I’m going, the answer will always be a lie.

Stone people want what anyone else wants, just without feeling it: to look up at the sky and know something tender; to sit at a familiar table and be more than just watching; to wake up warm and dry-faced. I am not good at the stars, at the drag show, when listening to Kris Kristofferson. I am not wall enough for when it’s you.

These are the things the cab driver laughs at: the pretense that money makes the backseat a separate entity; what people find out about each other when they are on their way to bed; how clear it is when it’s the first time.

I say my problem is and I mean one of my problems is, but my aim is true. I call it trepidation but what I am actually expressing is sense memory. Keep this omission and let it grow into a lie so that if I need it, it will also have grown cold with time.

There are the conversations we could have and the conversations we have. What to do and the weather, and Alex Rodriguez, and Liberace, and breakfast. They all end the same way. It’s a funny thing, the lines we draw with mouths. I drum syllables into the table with my fingertips, jiggle them with my foot. I will wait to the rhythm until it cracks through stone and says what I cannot:

I love you, I am not running. I love you, I have the heat on.

Amy Rossi's work has appeared in WhiskeyPaper, Blue Fifth Review, and Split Lip Magazine. You can find more of her work at and you can find her in a room by quoting Road House.