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"Head Over Heels" • Tears for Fears (by Aarik Danielson)

Two British friends, with their new lambswool faces and glassy keyboards, might as well be

Keats colluding with Percy Shelley, one closing his hand over the other’s, together penning the most romantic/Romantic first lines I know.

I wanted to be with you alone. And talk about the weather.

Their sentiment spills a sacred mystery, something only the gods and God-adjacent confess:

Words make weather. Ask me how I know, how she knows.

Talk of rain brings the rain. And the first time your open mouths trade stormy beads, the Scotch mist turns to drizzle, the drizzle becomes a baptism, and you cry for the miracle’s sake. Who am I fooling?—you cry every time, till it’s impossible to tell teardrop ends from cloudburst pearls. You learn to bottle this strange wine, something to sip on unraining days when the air is thin and stale and talk about the weather seems an elegant danger.

If you so much as speak like the snow, snow arrives on your whispers, the smallest sounds

before silence. Every hushed please and I love you, every How do you want me? consorts and descends, the whole earth knowing the blanket of your softest desires.

On partly sunny days, you say the clouds you want to see. A bird mid-flight. Winona Ryder’s

face curved into cigarette smile. That one looks like your childhood, this one a Magritte dream. Look, right up there—the shape of your courage floats past the shape of my intrusive thoughts.

And when you make purest summer, when heat sits on your tongue, that undivided sun kisses your freckled skin and freckles your kissed skin.

But like always, I get beyond myself. The wish, to be with you alone, comes first but hinges on the couplet’s end.

I wanted—I want!—to be with you alone, because when we have our wild words, our weather, we want for nothing else. Showers and sideways snows, woodwind breezes and all this invisible sun, fill up every space between us, bind us together.

This truth, this mystic forecast—it’s my bed and my book of poems. This is my blueprint for being a whole person. This is my retirement plan. This is my four-leaf clover.

Aarik Danielsen is the arts and culture editor at the Columbia Daily Tribune in Columbia, Missouri. He writes a regular column, The (Dis)content, for Fathom Magazine, and has been published at Image Journal, Plough, Split Lip, HAD, Rain Taxi, Tinderbox Poetry Journal and more. Find more of his work at


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