6×6 (Mackenzie Moore)

The funny thing about dating a musician
is that when you break up
they’ll write angry songs about you
and you’ll only find out once they’re recorded
and mixed and sitting on a drive somewhere ready
to go into the ether that is low royalty streaming

The funny thing about dating a writer
is that when you break up
she’ll write a whole poetry collection about
watching your relationship wilt
into a mothball of your collective disappointments
and people across the country will buy it

The funny thing about saying you never loved
someone is, cliches aside, it’s lazy and unspecific
and anyone who dares use that as an insult
should never be an attorney, or a stenographer
love is an emotion scaffolded by its subordinates—
trust, respect, and hard work; lemmings best not forgotten

To indicate someone has broken / lost / or made choices
to nullify those bonds pocks more grievous holes
it renders the memory of  love so porous that
it can’t hold anything / has no capacity to support
the past that actually was good, leaving it some
decaying shell— stunning, outgrown, seams fraying

The funny thing about singing you never loved me
is that it just doesn’t sting the way it should
and not because I think I was a better archivist
at logging the bones of whatever we were
yours sounds like a dream, like the guy who mixes
for beck wanted it to be a single, because I bet he did

It’s just: you kept saying how much
you just wanted to ditch music for good and write
and I still believe that— but: you have to care
about the details; you have to plate your failures
next to mine and let people reel at a full plate
You never loved me. Ok. That’s okay, for a pre-chorus.


Mackenzie Moore is a writer and illustrator based in Los Angeles who currently writes for scripted narrative podcasting. Her CNF and poems can be found in X-RAY, Hobart, Redivider, and The Dallas Review — she is an incoming residential writer for the Kenyon Review’s 2022 Nonfiction Workshop.


image: MM Kaufman