I’m lacking a word. It’s lost somewhere between “miss” and “love” and “fondly recall”. It’s jumbled, full of meaning and speechless. “I miss you” rings of swollen hearts, full of fire and life. It says, “without you, I feel the lack most strongly.” I do not feel a lack. I feel, perhaps, directionless, seeking, exhausted? But I was ready to say good bye to seeing you every day. But still, something… tugs. Something feels incomplete, a crossword puzzle left abandoned, the clue missing. I do not miss you and I miss you intensely. And you slip, I hate how you slip. You sneak, slowly, out of the room, leaving the party too early, not requesting permission to be excused. You are not excused, you must stay. I need you to stay. And I don’t. That is the space in-between. The curve around, the snake slithering past the right word. Reality slips in and around the comfortable places, like water, or mold, it will unearth itself everywhere. Like roaches. The reality of you is like a cockroach. It is tough, it will be around in me forever, perhaps undetected until disturbed. Until ever so intensely inconvenient, you spring up, ruining a dinner party. But stay then, please stay. Let me be fully immersed in the agony, let me grip the memory that you may feel closer as these minutes, inexplicably, leak by. They will keep rambling past you. You will become dusty, and heavier, sinking, the weight of the infinite number of minutes ahead that will not include you resting on you. You could not bear them, is that why? Is that why?
I know I am not close to you now. I know I am no closer to you than I was the moment I looked down and saw that mop of dead, dead hair. But- I wish to be this close in time to you. In bendable, wavering, unfaithful time. Time, curving to change with gravity, with speed. Meaningless and the only thing that matters. I’m afraid I’ll lose you, and afraid I’ll never lose you. You are not a puzzle, I cannot solve you. I cannot piece together the shattered glass, restore my old furniture and regain what I mourn. You are forever unchanging now, unnatural. This is not what I want, I don’t care if that is petulant. I saw you, in confession, in pain. You were so kind. You thief.
I echo, I reflect like twin mirrors. “Why?” “Why?” Unanswerable. “You didn’t deserve this.” Like a tea kettle, I release. Over full, I scream til empty.
The anniversary of your death is soon. You will not appear, and yet I am afraid.