inspired by Friederike Mayröcker. Her 1988 story “my heart my room my name,” was written entirely without punctuation, which inspires the breathlessness of these pieces by not utilizing punctuation.
You might not know this because I talk about ghosts like they are fashionable and my past like it’s an anthology of stories but I feel like I am the one doing the haunting as there are only so many things I can say before my words become hollow and echo through you but I want to ask forgiveness for saying goodbye but never allowing our history to be buried because I look at that grave I dug you each day and I look at the urn I bought you for your remains and I just keep thinking you’re somewhere out there alive dancing and smiling.
For a moment I could not decide if I preferred sunrises or sunsets but then I remembered my favorite color is twilight and I thought about the quiet hours of three a.m. where most things are sleeping and I would write you a love poem if I could but the truth is I’ve never been good at writing things like that because until I met you I believed every love story was the same beginning middle and end story but now I know how it feels to be inked into someone permanently and how it feels to see a freckle near the corner of your own eye and wonder if it kisses the freckle near his when your lips touch and I guess all this is to say I guess all love stories are cliché until you are the one with the pen in your hand writing the fables.
They say that death is nothing or simply a knock on a door but I know that is a lie and someone once asked if you ever watched someone die and there is a difference between watching someone dying and watching them die and I guess that moment when his skin went from a soft hand to hold to mere material keeping the organs in and I guess that moment when his eyes went from seeing me and acknowledging me with a glimmer to glass marbles is different than listening to her labored breathing and shallow eyes gazing vacantly at everything and nothing all at once but you reanimate this house when I see your shadow in the front hall or the floorboards whine in that one particular spot and I could not say goodbye until it was too late and I told you I wouldn’t forgive you for not holding onto us and this earth for a little bit longer
but I lied because of course I would forgive you.
As a girl I read mythology like others read fairy tales but the stories of gods and goddesses being jealous and fighting always appealed to me when I lived in a household where love was conditional and God was omnipotent and yet I thought there was something beautiful about the gods descending from their mountain to intervene and fall in love with us but I guess I could not know I would spend my days chasing love like fireflies and remembering the past like it was a melody I heard on the radio years ago and have been humming the same three notes for decades yet I guess it has almost been another year and I have to admit that I have grown even when I don’t see it and breathe just breathe because even dandelions grow in the cracks of pavement and satellites twist around the planet despite who owns them and I have a thousand questions that will not silence except when you take my hand in yours and squeeze.
…are these all love stories, despite my insistence otherwise?