Is/Not

Is/Not

Love is not a profession
genteel or otherwise
sex is not dentistry
the slick filling of aches and cavities
you are not my doctor
you are not my cure,
nobody has that
power, you are merely a fellow traveler
Give up this medical concern,
buttoned, attentive,
permit yourself anger
and permit me mine
which needs neither
your approval nor your surprise
which does not need to be made legal
which is not against a disease
but against you,
which does not need to be understood
or washed or cauterized,
which needs instead
to be said and said.
Permit me the present tense.

– Margaret Atwood

the answer i’ve been looking for.

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