When I write to you, Hello,
it’s marked with swollen
and I wonder
about your interpretation:
did I sound too curt?
too friendly? too tender?
too insecure?
And when I write to you, How are you,
I dread the response, Fine and you?
For it means you don’t much care,
or I hardly cross your mind.
With you I always hope
for meandering words that spell
      you miss me,
or how happy you are
to hear from me.
Cascading words
eager and breathless with longing,
as if a torch had been set

I take too long to decide
whether to sign my name
at the end with, Love,
or, Miss you,
or, I am holding you in my heart.
No. Too quaint. Too sentimental.
Just my initial, then. No.
Leave it blank.

These pings and emails
and texts and chats,
their rules confuse me,
when all I want
is to be old fashioned
with you.


Image by Bruno /Germany from Pixabay

M. Ocampo McIvor

M. Ocampo McIvor was born in the Philippines, raised in Toronto, Canada, and currently lives in Seattle. After a career in technology, Ocampo McIvor has returned to her roots to follow her calling in literature. Her work has been featured in Conclave Journal, Rigorous, and STORGY Magazine. She is the author of Ugly Things We Hide.