A DAY IN THE LIFE OF THE WRECKAGE OF ME LEFT IN THE WAKE OF YOU by Tawni Vee Waters

My writing has been reduced to fragments.  Anything longer would require a kind of continuity I seem unable to possess since you left.  You, who were never really here, left me for good, showing up from time to time to taunt me in my dreams.  How can the evaporation of a ghost bisect my flesh, but there she is:

me, a blood spattered corpse shattered on the rug of the home in which I slept last night.

As if understanding my inability to be any one thing for very long, the universe moves me from place to place.  I blow like a dried out blossom, carried on winds of grand invitations and extravagant kindnesses given by beautiful someones who see something in me you never saw.  I used to tell you I was the universe’s favorite daughter, and I think I still am.  She tosses me consolation prizes, tsk-tsking at your inability to recognize the best thing that ever happened to you.

Last week, I slept in the pines.  Bar signs carved from wood bore pictures of elk and bears.  I did the cliche thing, drank until I couldn’t see so I wouldn’t have to see you not with me.

Now, the signs are neon, and the air is warm with wet.  The sky sucks kisses from the ocean’s wrinkled face and spits them down at me.  I drink expensive things with strawberries, float in rich people’s pools, allowing my limbs to become entwined in the webs of light that lace the blue floors, thinking a world so stippled with beauty should not be wasted on the loveless.  I kiss people because they want me, and what does it matter?  They run smooth hands over the curves of my body, not believing their luck.  I feel nothing, staring at the ceiling, incapable even of thinking the word love.  I wonder if I will ever love again.  No, I think.  I only ever loved you, and you are gone.  The truth is my eyes, so good at seeing colors, see nothing without you.  You were my light, and your absence has rendered me blind.  Some days, I wake up, and my black hole eyes seem to have already imploded into forever.  My feet clunk on the floor like corpses.  I wonder if I will die.  It doesn’t matter to me.

In the pines, there was a rock where an Indian princess prayed for her dead lover to return to her.  He blew up on a wind, and she kissed him.  I climbed the rock too, asked the great spirit for you. Today, in the pool, a stick shaped like a man splattered in the water next to me.

I put him in my purse and prayed for mercy.

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