fleurishes: If you say something often enough, it begins to lose its meaning. Things like, “you’re beautiful” or “pass the bread” or “I miss you” and even “I love you.” The letters, the syllables, it all begins to run together until the language itself becomes undone. How many times can you say it before that handful of words become nothing— the air in your lungs, pushing out against the back of your teeth? How many times before you say them so often that you’ve gone and taken them right out of existence? I love you means, of course, I love you. It means courage. But how do you know when you’ve taken too much? Do the words start to feel hollow and stale in your mouth as you roll them onto your tongue like sugarless chewing gum that you’re still searching for a patch of artificial sweetener for? But the words, goddamn it, the words, they build up the way plaque does, causing cavities and heart disease if I don’t get to them fast enough. They pile themselves up, up, up, all the way up to the edge of the sky, the cratered cheek of the moon. And if I say my name, or any name, out loud enough times, can I make myself disappear?