letters music prayer WRITING

The Intimacy of Final Wishes


For the last eighteen months I’ve felt an unnatural squeezing in my heart, but it’s nothing I’ve felt a need to fight or look into. The only twinkle that comes to my eyes is that in response to your words.

Your letters always arrive laced in the spirit of childhood, but unbeknownst to you, it is I who have become the ghost. Though I’ve prayed day and night you would forget me, forget what you heard, saw, or imagined, my memory continues to haunt. I was none of those things, nor could I ever have been. In fact, were it not for your mirror, I would today fail to exist.

With these painful breaths I’ve been given, along with a spine long eroded by the tremendous hope of fulfillment, I’ve attempted to befriend the chapel. This is where I spend my mornings and afternoons, in her alcoves lighting candles and pouring wax along my arms only to imagine what it might feel like to be a statue revered. The hardening makes me feel alive, less exposed, less recognizable. The evening is too dark a project to travel alone, so I return here, to this transposition between absence and time, the address that accommodates my bed, my body, and this temporal fight.

I have no say in your memory of me, yet in darkness do proclaim that I never wished you harm, nor did I then or now feel worthy of your love and attention. If ever there was intimacy, let it be unraveled and thrown atop the ocean in the blankets of those moments that wrapped us like wayward vines entangling our feet in the fleeting confidence of joyful knowing.

Maybe once upon a time I was your lucky penny, and maybe now you’re still my four leaf clover, but my time here is nearly ended, and I might be too hardened to start over. But it’s never too late for those with the spirit of a child, so start over my love. Every day, start over.

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