Tonight I Can Play the Saddest Games

Tonight I can play the saddest games.

Play, for example, the game ‘Mass Effect: 2, the Shepherd
and the Reaping.’

The small room revolves around the screaming screen.

Tonight I can play the saddest games.

I loved her, and sometimes
when I followed the right decision tree
she loved me too.

Through nights like this one I held her in my digital arms
and how we romped and reveled in two minutes of cut scenes.

I kissed her again and again under the infinite sky.

She loved me, sometimes I loved her too,
unless I picked the blue one, or the one in the atmospheric suit, or the
angry one with tattoos.

How could one not love those rendered bodies,
and ah those great still eyes.

Tonight I can play the saddest games.

To think that I do not have her. To know that I have moved too far
past the last save point, and thus have lost her.

To hear the immense room, more immense without the screen-light.

And the thumb falls to the remote control like the fist to the pulpit.

What does it matter that this story will end.
The game is infinite. It replays well.

This is all. There is no princess. There is no castle.

I die and my soul is not satisfied that it has lost.

I play. I try to woo another, to bring her closer to me.
Though what is closeness, when there is the screen between us?

The same glow of the same start menu
whitening the same couch.

We, of this time, can no longer game.

I no longer love her, that’s certain, but how I loved
youtubing her cut scenes to remember that time I loved her.

Another’s. She will be another’s. And another’s.

As she was before my gaming. And after. Afteeeeerrrrrrr.

Her bubbling voice, her glowing body. Her pixilated eyes.

I no longer play that game, that’s certain,
but maybe I play the game.

Games are so short, gaming is so long.

Because through nights like this one I pressed pause
right before the GAME OVER screen revealed itself.

My soul is not satisfied
I have lost.


(Poem inspired by Pablo Neruda’s “Tonight I Can Write the Saddest Lines”)

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