I won the lottery, and then you died. What were you doing in those months that I spluttered and failed in this city? How did you feel your way through those hours and days, and who was by your side?
I won the lottery and I squandered my winnings, thanks to love. You lost even more thanks to hate, the warping of love beyond the point it warps us all. I think of those months that separated us, and how I was turning toward you the entire time, coming closer, thinking I was moving myself along, but really it was life under my feet taking me a different way. The pretence of control, as if winning the lottery doesn’t already prove that it’s random, chance that carries us.
You died alone. But I was there. After. In the 13 minutes it took for the police to arrive. Sitting, standing, crouching, doubled over. Pacing in the smallest circle, careful not to touch or move – Stay still, they said. And I knew they meant to say – Someone was there before you, someone left their mark. If you don’t disturb. And you know where to look …
The idea for my second novel is taking shape. Beginning again is its own kind of memory …
It is not so remarkable. To be two in seven billion. To find each other in the throng. It is not so remarkable to navigate the wide oceans and narrow fences between us, to swim and scramble, and to arrive at each other at last.
It’s not so remarkable to shake loose from our skins, to shed the layers of other lives – to lay naked and begun in borrowed arms. There is nothing to revere in the slow unwind, in the pulse and rise of you and I. In the honesty of opened palms, and the delicate invitation. These consummations of an extra-ordinary kind.
There is nothing special in this, my love. To fall so hard that you prefer the ground. How it sinks you in and you’re finally found. How all around us people are buried alive, and here we are – gasping for air.
(There is not a single thing worth holding there).
Not a thing at all, I have to say. If you close your eyes and take your time. If you think on what we had, and made … if you think about just what we were given. I feel certain that now we would have to agree. It is not so remarkable at all.
“And others just read of Others only read of the love, the love that I love.” ~ Jason Mraz
Eidyia’s note: I haven’t done this in a while – a look back at what I was writing exactly a year ago. This one, I remember so clearly – and why. It was a little writer moment, but something else, too. A way of remembering his hand at my back … differently.