I opened my curtains. I’ll close them again, but it’s snowing outside and I had to stop and watch. Although I can rant on for days, and write long poetic epitaphs for you, sometimes it’s nice to drop the whole “I’m an aspiring writer who has a superior vocabulary to you” and just watch. Sit and watch.
If I move to the window I can see out into the city. I’m in our upstairs study, so I can look over the apartment blocks, and over into the snow-covered hills that are so far away. I can see the spot where we held hands. I can see the spot where we kissed. I can see the building where a woman once left her lace curtains opened for too long and where she died. I can see the place where you promised you’d take AA, and your therapist's office, and the place you were fired from so many times. But that doesn’t matter. I think I keep repeating ideas through this because it’s important to remember what was important. Little key words to bring me back to your story. I don’t know why I’m writing all this down, but Jerry said it can help. He dropped by a few months ago so say hello, and had no idea it was you who had jumped of the bridge that night. Crazy, huh? He said you’d left your cardigan behind all those years ago at that house party of his. I said to keep it. I hadn’t (I should bring this into the present tense but it would be too shameful to write) cleared out your stuff yet, but I really didn’t need more coming in. I told him to give it to his fiance, and he corrected me to wife. Times have been changing, but my curtains were closed, and I hadn’t seen it yet.
Your mother hasn’t called, but that’s no news, I’m sure. I once went to your grave and saw some flowers she left. They were tulips, once again. If it weren’t incredibly rude I would have thrown them out, but I’ll let her live in her ignorance. I let her keep bringing you Spring flowers until she slips into forgetting all about us. But I promise to heed my attention to more than local garage flowers and my problems with your family members. Also, since it’s snowing the camellia flowers will start to bloom, so I’ll bring you a bunch soon. I say that as if I don’t go there constantly, as if I don’t go there more often than I encounter other people. But again - it’s too shameful to really admit.
As for anyone else you may care about, it’s been all the same here. I think this is how life is though. Always the exact same until you go out and find something remarkable. Maybe we always saw great things because we were great people. Maybe adventure doesn’t wait on your doorstep after all.
I’ll start going out more, I think. I know that’s what you would have wanted. I’ll also start cooking better meals, and writing more poetry about the little joyous things, and taking more photos of myself before I change too much and my skin grows papery and all that. All the things you would preach to me about. The important bits that make up life.
The web I spoke about still hasn’t snapped. It’s strong, and I feel it tugging. But where I used to feel it tugging me towards your headstone, I realised standing over your physical remains didn’t help anything. I find the web pulling my heart. It pulls me to my desk to write this for you. It brings me to a coffee shop and out of the miserable, memory-filled rain. It makes me cook breakfast and make my bed and do things that you would have wanted me to do. You always cared for me, and it seems as though you still are from the Other Side, or wherever you are now. Sure, the string makes me make two breakfasts instead of one, and find myself waking up on your side of the bed, with my arm draped over the edge, but I am getting better.
I don’t know what to say. I think your story is ending.
Well, not ending. The reason I wrote it in reverse is so that I’d never have to deal with an ending. Just a majestic, kind hearted beginning. That was the most important bit too. That, and all the middle of course. Every second with you was an adventure I am blessed to know.
I’ll tell you about me now I suppose. I mean in the exact state I am in while typing this.
Or I guess I can tell you about the snow?
Since I am the same as the second you saw me last (except with slightly shaggier hair), I’ll tell you what I can see in the snow.
I see frozen lakes. And dancers on the ice, the pixies or fairies. What did you say the other one’s were? Nymphs or something? If you’re reading over my shoulder now you can answer that. Also if you are in the room with me now please excuse the dusty, dark cave I made of our home.
But in the snow, if I really look, I can see the red string that ties me to you. It’s made of crystals and it shines in the sun just like you. It’s also strong like you, and breathtakingly beautiful. Maybe one day it’ll take me to another adventure. But for now my old armchair in front of my coffeecup stained desk is just fine.
I can also see a dress. It’s blindly white, and it sways in the wind. Like a ballroom gown, but the girl in it is more than just a princess.
I wish I gave you that stupid little wedding ring that burns a hole in my pocket everyday now. I wish for many things, but even a second more on earth with you could have changed our lives forever, certainly yours I believe. I try not to think about it, but sometimes I wonder if you’d still be dead if I had just given you the ring the night before. Just one night.
You know what though? There’s a multiverse version of us that are making snapshot decisions of our opinions on the guests at our wedding. Our real home can be in the woods, where you’d always wanted it, and we can fall asleep every night, just awaiting the morning in bed with each other close, and totally in love. In a whole other world you can drop and glass and we can laugh, and you’ll get a good stable job, and your mom doesn’t have to come to our wedding because all the girls you danced with that night came, and we have our honeymoon by the riverside, and one day you decline my offer of a celebratory champagne (the one I probably because you did something remarkable, like you published a novel of your Tropics of Capricorn), and I raise and eyebrow at your subtle hints, and we can run through snowy field with the kids you always wanted, and we can quote our favourite things to each other, and we can grow old and buy lacy curtains that we don’t ever have to close because we love the stars in the sky, and you’ll still laugh like magic and kiss me softly, and we worked through all of your demons together.
But you know what, love? I think I’ll be alright. Because if there’s something I learned in all of your tales and morals and quips, and something I took from all of our adventures and something I know from your unravel life is that sometimes great things come to a close. All curtains close eventually, and even winter flowers die. But that doesn’t mean they weren’t beautiful.
I love you. I love you and our life and, yes, I love all that we could have been - but that much doesn’t matter. I am so lucky that I got to spend this time on this world with you. There’s a multiverse where our eyes never met, and I’m so fortunate, really. Thank you so much for everything.
I love you, and now that the snow is stopping, I think I’ll close my blinds again.