empty gray concrete road between trees

The Ghost In The Getaway Car

It was a beautiful heist. I knew all along where each illicitly sweet moment would lead. As the love slipped through my fingers, I took off in the getaway car. Shaking, I floored the gas down the highway, but I didn’t know that the ghost hitched my ride.

It first crept into my dreams the same way a wisp of breeze comes in September. Then, it consumed them like an icy draft in the dead of winter. Each one is so vivid that I almost confuse them for memories. Moments that seem just as real as the person I left at that bleak scene. The same sunny smile and voice, but a touch just out of reach. And I wake up with the most treacherous feeling, the kind of feeling that makes me wonder if I made a mistake.

Now my ghost wanders crowded rooms in lonely cities. It stays with me throughout lively conversations, delicately reminding me of lighthearted times. Meanwhile, it forgets to remind me of all the dreadful lows that came with them. When I cruise down the coast, its presence lingers in the backseat of my car. So I watch the ocean take a deep breath and collapse down the shore, blasting the radio to try to muffle the deafening silence in my heart. The silence that I can’t live with yet I can’t live without. It always has come down to an indecisive love.

I just can’t seem to shake it. I find pieces of the ruins in crumpled papers and still streets. Everywhere I go, the whispers of what could have been haunt me. Maybe those unsaid words and undone things could have made a difference. Maybe this love could have just learned to listen. If only I knew how to make an almost last forever.

But merciless guilt only goes so far. And I’ve realized that if I want this ghost to leave, I have to let it. I have to focus on the glimpse of freedom I’ve found in letting go of something that wasn’t meant to stay. Because the dear love I once knew has become a memory. And after all, getaways always come with consequences.