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When the Moon Was Ours When the Moon Was Ours by Anna-Marie McLemore
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“When they both realized they were heartbroken enough to want the love torn from their rib cages, they touched each other with their hands and their mouths, and they forgot they wanted to be cured.”
Anna-Marie McLemore, When the Moon Was Ours
tags: love
“...both he and she were creek beds, quiet when they were full and quiet when they were dry. But when they were half-full, wearing a coat of shallow water, the current bumped over the rocks and valleys in the creek beds, wearing down the earth. Giving someone else a little of who they were hurt more than giving up none or all of it.”
Anna-Marie McLemore, When the Moon Was Ours
“No boy was ever so interesting to them as when he was interesting to someone else.”
Anna-Marie McLemore, When the Moon Was Ours
“The difference between baptism and drowning is a few faithless breaths.”
Anna-Marie McLemore, When the Moon Was Ours
“It shouldn't have mattered, not when Miel and the other girls in his class wore jeans more than they wore skirts. Not when they told their brothers what to do, and borrowed their fathers' books.
But there was everything else. The idea of being called Miss or Ms. or worse, Mrs. The thought of being grouped in when someone called out 'girls' or 'ladies.' The endless, echoing use of 'she' and 'her,' 'miss' and 'ma'am.' Yes, they were words. They were all just words. But each of them was wrong, and they stuck to him. Each one was a golden fire ant, and they were biting his arms and his neck and his bound-flat chest, leaving him bleeding and burning.
'He.' 'Him.' 'Mister.' 'Sir.' Even teachers admonishing him and his classmates with 'boys, settle down' or 'gentlemen, please.' These were sounds as perfect and clean as winter rain, and they calmed each searing bite of those wrong words.”
Anna-Marie McLemore, When the Moon Was Ours
“The way he loved her was his, even if she wasn’t.”
Anna-Marie McLemore, When the Moon Was Ours
“They're expected to forget everything they knew about being anything other than what they're supposed to be.”
Anna-Marie McLemore, When the Moon Was Ours
“The truth slid over her skin, that if she loved him, sometimes it would mean doing nothing. It would mean being still. It would mean saying nothing, but standing close enough so he would know she was there, that she was staying.”
Anna-Marie McLemore, When the Moon Was Ours
“Her feeling that the moon had slipped from her grasp seemed locked in a place so far inside her that to reach it would be to break her open.”
Anna-Marie McLemore, When the Moon Was Ours
“No,' she whispered over those fields. 'No, you can't have this part of me.'

If they tried to take Sam, she'd do anything she could to stop them, but that choice was his. This one was hers.

'I am not your garden,' she said, the words no louder than the thread of her mother's voice the wind carried.

'I am not one of your pumpkin vines.'

'You do not own what I grow.”
Anna-Marie McLemore, When the Moon Was Ours
“Her mother did not guess that water could be more dangerous when there was less of it.”
Anna-Marie McLemore, When the Moon Was Ours
“They prickled her like thorns and leaves growing under her skin, and she felt the ache of a glass vine caging her forearm. They would crack, and the jagged pieces would cut into her wrists. Her blood would tint the glass. It would splinter and cut deeper into her.”
Anna-Marie McLemore, When the Moon Was Ours
tags: pain
“The fact that Aracely might understand what he could not say, it seeded in him a want, new and raw, like not knowing he was thirsty until water was in front of him. No one else, not his mother, not even Miel, could understand this wanting to live a life different from the one he was born into, so much that his own skin felt like ice cracking.

It shouldn't have mattered, not when Miel and the other girls in his class wore jeans more than they wore skirts. Not when they went out as late as they wanted. Not when they told their brothers what to do, and borrowed their fathers' books.

But there was everything else. The idea of being called Miss or Ms. or, worse, Mrs. The thought of being grouped in when someone called out 'girls' or 'ladies.' The endless, echoing use of 'she' and 'her,' 'miss' and 'ma'am.' Yes, they were words. They were all just words. But each of them was wrong, and they stuck to him. Each one was a golden fire ant, and they were biting his arms and his neck and his bound-flat chest, leaving him bleeding and burning.

'He. Him. Mister. Sir.' Even teachers admonishing him and his classmates with 'boys, settle down,' or 'gentlemen, please.' These were sounds as perfect and clean as winter rain, and they calmed each searing bite of those wrong words.”
Anna-Marie McLemore, When the Moon Was Ours
“Look," Aracely said. "I know what you're going through."

"No you don't." Sam sat up. "I still have to live like this. Nothing is gonna fix me. There's no water that's gonna make me into something else."

"And I'd start from where you are if it meant what happened that night didn't have to happen," Aracely said. "We don't get to become who we are for nothing. It costs something. You're fighting for every little piece of yourself. And maybe I got all of me at once but I lost everything else. Don't you dare think there's any water in the world that makes this easy.”
Anna-Marie McLemore, When the Moon Was Ours
“They’d spent enough time together that their bodies had pulled on each other, and they now bled at the same time, when the moon was a thin curve of light. If Miel had been anyone else, her knowing this, the steady rhythm of her knowing every month, would have been humiliating.”
Anna-Marie McLemore, When the Moon Was Ours
“To the boys who get called girls,
the girls who get called boys,
and those who live outside these words.
To those called names,
and those searching for names of their own.
To those who live on the edges,
and in the spaces in between.
I wish for you every light in the sky.”
Anna-Marie McLemore, When the Moon Was Ours
“She wanted you to have the life you wanted,' Aracely said. 'So figure out what kind of life you want.”
Anna-Marie McLemore, When the Moon Was Ours
tags: life
“She was a world unknown. She was a place whose darkness held not fear, but the promise of stars.”
Anna-Marie McLemore, When the Moon Was Ours
“That was probably another thing Aracely had almost asked ten times, opening her mouth and then hesitating. Why, to Miel, a pumpkin couldn't just be a pumpkin. A question Aracely knew better than to say out loud.”
Anna-Marie McLemore, When the Moon Was Ours