It was a slip of the tongue in every sense of that ridiculous cliche.
Of all the times to let it run wild, run free, run up and down over the words I'm terrified to say, while struggling mightily to hold onto that sliver of control I worked so hard to maintain... Of all the times, of all the slips, this was the time I lost all control.
Tired from choking back the questions I'm not allowed to ask, exhausted from swallowing every confession I've been dying to make, spent from delivering to your skin just a few of the infinite kisses I have for you, drained from all the times it was bitten to keep my secrets in, it finally failed me. It slipped.
The most dangerous of slips, the slipperiest of slopes, down I went in sync with the words tumbling from my mouth. It was only then, as I gawked at them floating in the air between us and tasted the tinny, metallic taste I was finally free from, that I knew their real toxicity. How strange, something so sweet to be said is such poison to bear.
Were the words themselves the poison? Was it their captivity in my anxious mouth? Was it the way they lingered in the murky space between my trembling lips and your bashful ear?
Or was it that once they were finally freed, I knew that the face I'd spent a thousand lifetimes memorizing would fade into one of a stranger?