i can almost picture you in front of me now.
you zip through life, all laid out ahead of me over the years. at times you’re cryptic, revealing only half a turn you took and letting me guess what’s around the mountain. others, you are straight and cutting as a knife.
i’ve pressed a finger on the rippling pulse of your feelings, sat with you patiently through long nights with soup or cigarettes, seen through your fears, listened to your loneliness.
your voice, your strength, your empty hours have been as exact and terrifying, as bold and alive as the words you chose to carry them through.
i still see you as i find out myself what lies around the mountain — there, now, a black cat, your paws tapping mutely on the hardwood floor across my room. you turn and glance at me with your green eyes once. that sparkle in my eye when i find courage: two. the manic need to see it through when i’ve made myself the promise? you. choosing real over right: all you.
it all started when i was simmering in the quiet folds of adolescence one afternoon, and i crouched over my keyboard, looking for a cowardly fix. i found you then: you offered up your life for me to get lost in over the internet. and you’ve been there since — you, sprightly, clever, cocky you, unwinding before me like a story that never ends, a beautiful character that never leaves you.
but the less i read these days, the less i know you. i think that was the secret. that once you see around the mountain, it’s hard to understand what’s left behind.
i long for the nights of certainty i remember through your eyes. i’m often at a loss for how to write my own life now, and even though i don’t wish to start over, i sometimes wonder what it’d be like to have gone your path.