Slam Poetry AU

Clearing out the WIP/rough drafts in my Googledocs that won’t get finished fics anytime soon. If anyone wants to add on/chime in/create something, feel free.

Ross writes sometimes complex poems about failed relationships and performs them at a nearby cafe. Smith stumbles upon it one night out walking, bored with nothing to do one evening. And then he notices Ross, and becomes smitten.

Ross’ poetry also written by me.

cw: disgustingly romantic. mention of cheating, failed relationships, hook ups.
If I need to tag something, let me know.

slam poetry meeting and finding them fantastic

Smith always had an appreciation for poetry, though he’s absolutely shit at it himself. Never had the cadence in his voice for reading it either. And it’s not like his voice is particularly smooth when speaking.

Smith sits up straighter in his seat.
“Um…Hi?” The man on the stage adjusts the mic and clears his throat. “My name’s Ross.” A smirk draws the corner of his lips up. “This one’s called…Aquarius. Shit title, I think, too cliche but…here we go.”
The crowd waits patiently, and someone in the back coughs.
“I wanted you…” The man on the stage takes a breath, licking his lips. “Like a swimmer wants the sea.
“Where your lips meet mine they…crash like waves, salt-brine in a storm.” He pauses, and one of his hands reaches up to curl fingers around the mic. “I would travel miles just to see the sun rise around you, sail until the moon became our rival.
“For she watches us. Watches us as we make circles ‘round each other, caught in riptides, sinking under.” He shakes his head minutely. “Daughter of destruction, she chases us, and we will falter.” His hand falls slowly into his lap again. “I was blind to see the storm. It was only when the skies had cleared that I realized you were gone. That in effort to catch the sun I had lost you.”
There’s an appreciative murmur from the crowd, and the poet continues. “It’s only now I realize that the ocean is wild. The ocean does not stop for no man to part it, not for mortals; not for me. Not under these skies nor for distant lovers.
“The swimmer cannot tame the waters. Their only choice is to swim or to drown. Despite my best efforts, you let it take me under. I shouldn’t have been so surprised.”
Smith applauds along with the rest of the crowd.

“It was supposed to be a mistake.”
The crowd ooohs. Ross licks his lips.
“When the morning came around, I was supposed to get up, get dressed, and leave, but instead…” he sighs, “I stayed. Because the way you looked at me…” He shakes his head. “…was way too heavy. So much meaning in your eyes. I fell right in, sank to the bottom of those bright blues, and I couldn’t leave.” He pauses. “I couldn’t tell you that the night before meant nothing. I couldn’t walk out that door because you looked at me like I meant something-”
The crowd oooohs again.
“-and later on you made me breakfast. Admittedly…it was terrible.”
The crowd laughs.
“I didn’t have the heart to tell you. I didn’t want to admit to myself that your terrible cooking was kind of adorable.” Ross gives a shrug and then looks solemn again, finger curling around the mic stand. “But I should have taken that as a warning. I knew the longer I stayed that I would get stuck even more, trapped in your web that I pretended I didn’t see. Later on, after several nights together, I came over to your place and smelled someone else’s cologne on your sheets.”
The crowd oooooohs again.
Ross presses his lips together and delivers the final line.
“When I asked you, you looked at me and said…’It was supposed to be a mistake.'”
The crowd bursts into applause and Ross flashes a little grin before sliding off the stool and vacating the stage.
He so adorable…Smith sighs to himself. And yet he gets himself hurt a lot…
He wanted to talk to him, get to know him, kiss those lips of his. But he didn’t know where to begin, didn’t ever see the man beside up on stage.

And then one night, he arrived early, and there he was. Sitting near the table Smith always chose, looking at his phone.
Fuck, there’s your chance! He took a deep breath, steeled himself and walked over. He nearly chickened out several times, but once he’d made it to the man’s side, he looked up.
“Hi?” Ross said questioningly.
“Hi.” Smith replied. “Can I sit here?” He gestured to the empty seat across from Ross.
“Yeah, sure.”
“I, uh. I’ve heard your poems. They’re really great.”
Wow, that sounded stupid of him. But Ross didn’t seem to mind, chuckling. “Thanks mate. Means a lot.”

They talk more, about common interests, exchange numbers, talk more over the week. Ross asks him if he’s coming to the reading this week.

“This one isn’t actually about a crap relationship this time!”
The crowd laughed with Ross as he adjusted the mic and sat down.
“This one’s about a…romantic interest.” Ross smiled shyly and the crowd oohed.
Smith’s heart thumped in his chest as he leaned perceptively forward.
Ross cleared his throat and began.
“Something about this feels right.
“I don’t know if I knew when you laughed or when I noticed you had pretty eyes-”
Smith blushes.
“But I knew for certain when I left to take the stage. Even without seeing you in the crowd, I felt your eyes on me. I knew you were watching, and I knew you weren’t judging.
“In those moments I wanted to get to know you. I wanted you to get to know not just the poet on stage but the poet who writes, the poet who breathes, the poet-” He paused. “-who sometimes wants to feel…like more than just a poet.
“I think…maybe…you’re the right kind of chance to take. The right kind of…gamble to make? Except, I don’t want you to be. Maybe I’m losing touch with myself, I’m- I’m overwhelmed, around you, and I…”
The audience chuckles at Ross’ flustered acting and Smith can’t help but smile at the genuineness.
“The truth is, I like you.”
The admittance makes Smith’s heart flutter in his chest. A grin steals its way across his face.
“Something about this feels right, with you.” Ross continues. “And if you’re willing to make it, too…” He looks over in the corner where he knows Smith is sitting. “I’ll take that chance.”

Smith’s phone buzzed on the table as he gets a text. He stops his clapping and grins, noticing it’s from Ross.
“Would you meet me outside?”
Smith exits the cafe, shivers in the cold autumn wind. Ross is standing underneath the streetlamp, grinning.
“Hi.” He says.
“Hey.” Smith greets back, sharing a similar grin. They walk closer to one another, huddling as the wind cuts through them.
“So…” Ross starts, licking his lips. “Did you like it?”
Smith grins. “I loved it.”
Ross ducks his head shyly, laughing. “I’m glad.” He says, eyes meeting Smith’s.
Smith glances down at Ross’ mouth and then back up to his eyes.
“Can I kiss you?” He asks.
“Yeah.” Ross curls his hand into Smith’s hoodie as they step even closer to each other.
Smith tilts his head and rocks forward on his toes to kiss him. Ross’ lips are warm on his, supple and sweet. They kiss outside for several minutes, until they realize it’s way too cold to do this.
“Do you want to get out of here?” Ross asks, breaking the kiss and shivering against Smith. “It’s fucking freezing.”
Smith kisses his cheek. “That’s up to you.”
In the back of his mind, he replays Ross’ terrible relationship poems.
He doesn’t want this to be a mistake.
But it doesn’t feel like one at all.
Like Ross had said earlier, something about this feels right.
The poet in question presses kisses to his neck.
“I’d like to, if you’d like to.”
Smith shivers, and Ross moves away. “We don’t have to do anything, we can just get out of the cold.”
Smith cups Ross’ cheek in his hand. “I’d like to.”
Ross smiles. “I’d like to, too.” He takes his hand. “Promise you won’t cook me terrible breakfast?”
Smith laughs and follows Ross back to where he lives. “Promise. I’ll make the greatest pancakes you’ve ever had.”
The two make their way to Ross’ home, and if they stop to kiss each other senseless under streetlights, then who can blame them. If what they were doing felt right, it was something worth doing, and they had plenty of things to do.


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