You met me at a very bad time in my life, I wrote. Perhaps I would have been different in the summer. Last summer was especially beautiful, with its own set of rules carved in stone, until the last waves of August washed the shores clean and all the stones crumbled to dust.
I sipped a little more coffee and looked at the pathetic bunch of contradictions screaming at each other on paper. Pulling up my cheeks for a smile, I still can’t stop my heart from bleeding.
You see, I write with my chest open. I dip my pen in my soul and write about my dearest continents: my stories, my beloved ones, my heart’s homes. I don’t use my imagination enough, like a writer should. Instead I stick to what I know and tell the truth in its purest, most naive simplicity, then sit at home for days waiting for forgiveness and redemption. I check my mail frantically and hope for kinder words than my own from above, from him, from them. I write everybody love letters and dream of how one day I will become a book in their hands. Will they understand me then? I can already see the first page:
As you read this, you’re stepping inside. Welcome. Don’t tiptoe, don’t whisper, don’t close the door behind you. In my chest you can be crazy loud and reckless. This is how I am too.
Today I am me, because there is nothing I have left to become, no other shape to pour myself into, no other addictions left to let define me. I am me, gentle and intuitive and poetic and sensitive, giving up on my summer self, my winter self, my last years’ selves. I am me, and I am easy and a little empty, letting them all know that I loved them with all the fire in my soul, until the last waves of August washed it over.
I can hear your thoughts watching me after you read me, silently urging me not to turn silent when I should be in fact on fire. You see, I too used to be all about fun and games, until my whole life began to look like a play.
I lived for playground and rooftops and flying over clouds and cities at sunrise with an energy nobody could tame. During those days of late night drives with my arm dangling out the window and my favourite songs on the radio, staying up past midnight with a cigarette in my mouth and watching old films, riding my bicycle across the city trying to avoid the dangerous drivers, looking at the glitter of lights, the lights inside peoples’ windows, the lights of cars and trucks coming the other way, I was on fire.
But today I am silent. The stones and the flames have turned to ashes and dust. I am a Phoenix. Rebuilding has always been my great escape. But today I question the soil’s stability, and the climate, and the strength of my heart. I move with the seasons, back and forth but always around home, a home that’s been rebuilt so many times that it barely feels like home.
I want to explain myself to everybody, I feel that I owe my every thought to the world. It’s soul-crushing, like the waves, like the flames. Like me. I smile. I will always crave intensity, but today, I don’t.
My coffee is cold, and I look around the room. This is my place, this is my book, this is me. This is my last letter for a while. I’m going away, to find myself in better places and return with a refreshed heart.
You met me at a very bad time in my life. Perhaps I will be different in the summer.
“Listen carefully to my silence
It’s not something you’re going to hear very often
And if you do
Know that it’s either love growing in between the sounds syllables make
Or my distance”