Saudade

For some time now I’ve been stuck in this place of longing for people and things I know I will never experience again. It’s a cruel kind of nostalgia that extends beyond memory and into a realm of existentialism that I can’t come to terms with. I’d say it’s a form of melancholy where tangible photos do not exist and love letters have no value.

In reality, the lights have snapped on, and everybody’s home or dead. There is no resurrecting the past.  

…And he said, “Didn’t we have a good time?” So I said, “Yes, the best,” and it was as if we’d never parted but also as if we’d never really known each other. I remember the night perfectly yet not at all. Music blasted into the crowd and lights caught us dancing in the glow of a euphoric, shared experience that lingers somewhere inside of me.

It’s the details that slip—what was said, the time of night, the exact order of events, and how we ended up. There must have been the drive there and back. But did he spend the night at my place or did I drop him home? Was that the night we slept on the floor because his sheets were in the wash? Did we eat cold pizza from the cardboard box in the morning after I traced words on his back that begged him to guess how my heart was flecked with love? It was the kind of love held hostage because our language lived under the covers instead of in the air.

There were so many entanglements then. He’s miles away from me now, so none of it hardly matters. This can’t be a love letter because married women can’t reminisce like that without consequences. This is a memory. A feeling. An irony. One of many sadnesses I carry that taste like good whiskey. Like a toast to things that once were but can never be again. And it’s beautiful just as it is. So I wouldn’t go back even if I had the chance. If I keep him suspended like that, he’ll always be mine and I his in a perfectly parabolic arc, fading away over distance, time, and space.

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