Sunday, August 29, 2010

Memento Mori


Now that you are gone, there is music echoing in my ears, such that I had never heard before. It was so strange, because now that you are not here, I understand that you were music. There was music in your laughter, there was rhythm in your every move. The way you spoke was harmony, and even when your voice was rising in that frightening crescendo, you were a symphony. Did you always hear music? Was there always a song playing in your head? Or am I foolish for thinking such a thing could be true about you?

Now that you no longer walk with me, I have found how warm the things you made are. I have gone and wrapped myself in the cottons and wools that I had once sneered at. I lay on the bed where once you laid, and wrap myself in the covers that you found such comfort in. I am reliving the comfort, the warmth, the embrace that you must have felt in the things you made with your on fingers. The day you died I took down your favorite shawl and wrapped it over my own shoulders. How could I have been so blind to not see this before, how could I have been depriving myself of such a delight? How could I have deprived you of the sight of seeing me enjoying this?

Now that you no longer sit at my breakfast table, my taste buds have awoken. I have sat down and smelled the heat of tea with sugar, have tasted it flowing down my throat. I have to say that it tastes like you? For too long, I was searching for that. For too long, my teeth were aching for the familiar flavor of you. How is it that I never made this simple connection before? How is it that I never let myself drink this in before, never before tasted you all day like this?

Now that you don't sit up all night anymore, I have found the wonder of stars. I sit awake, again wrapped in your shawl, and I sit with the window open. I feel the cold air of the night, virgin and new, blowing over me. I number the stars, name them such as the Greeks never would have dared. Here is the Light of Your Eyes. Here is Your Smile. And here... Here is Your Face. I trace these shapes and never could I make anyone else believe they are there. Why did I never come and sit with you like this? Why did we never paint a masterpiece in the sky together?
Now that you are gone, I know what it is to be lonely. I took you for granted. I thought you'd always be waiting for me, curled up on the battered couch, with the moth eaten blanket draped over your body. I thought I'd always find the old tomes in your hands (I have discovered what it means to feel those pages beneath my fingers, to read the words that are so ancient and still so resonating with my soul! How could I never have noticed before?). I thought you'd always wake up next to me, your hair a mess around your face, your eyes blurry and never lighting until they landed on my face. I know now what it means to walk these streets, so full of people and still so empty. I know what it means to turn the key in the lock and smell nothing but my breakfast dishes, in this dark, dusty apartment.

Now that you are gone...

...I suddenly remember that I will die, too.

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