The day had begun before I opened my eyes. Dawn was spread thin out of darkness, running in lines of glimmering color like firebranded children, their woolen fingers gingerly clutching sparklers.
Cold floor, warm sheets, where I lay curled unconscious to the emptiness of waking. Waking without you there, to murmur and move naturally, as if in-utero against me, filling me with wholeness.
Often it is said, we should learn to subsist alone. Need less, want less. Others can only risk hurting us in the long run, be it through death, loss, departure, choice.
I chose you despite this. I chose to make that hurdle from the crumbling edge of the river bank to the other side, thinking it impossible. Still I jumped, sailing through the air, seeing my legs missing my mark, reaching further, beyond what was possible. Catching the other side in my fingertips and pulling up, out of failure.
They all said, all those who become ‘they,’ the disapproving, the know-it-alls, the omnipotence, they all said, you shouldn’t take the risk.
It was a bare insult. They all done it, and survived, but the rules were different when it came to me. It was as if I were a child, a child incapable of her own making, bound to their divinity board, with the scalpel sharp against my pieces.
For all who were ‘they’ it was clear, ‘they’ didn’t know me. I was never a child who listened well enough, I was too high up in the tree limbs to hear when they scolded and found my mud stained shoes thrown off.
For the girl with different rules, without rule, there was only the instinct followed by the outcome. I leapt across and I watched myself, clear the jump and claim you. Inspite of it all.
Now you are gone, and I can fit into their net of told-you-so’s at long last. I am the emptied woman. The one who sleeps until the very last moment in a vain attempt to quench consciousness.
You will not return. It is not your way to change your mind. As it was not my way to alter my trajectory, coming like a star out of darkness, pinned on you.
What a fool, they will say. What a mistake, they will cluck. And I will spin my hair into clouds and ruise, above the words, the noise.
I am reminded of the saying, better to have tried than not at all. It doesn’t apply in this world I live. It does apply to me because I only know how to try, not how to win.
I am not a good American girl. I stood in the sidelines, I did not have the competition burning in my throat. I did not want to cheer.
But I am a good American traveler. At night I reach as far as my celestial body will carry me, into the caves of others, searching for you.
Yes I have not given up. I know you will be there eventually and I will witness it. The moment you discover, I didn’t stop looking.
When two lie so close the heartbeat of one becomes the other and beneath them both stirs, a symphony, how can they separate?
Do you think death will have the claim to take you far away and never again let me beside you? This is false. I am stronger than death. I have love.
You may be cold now, you may be afraid, but I am on my way, I will travel no matter the cost, it will take time, but I will find you.