When you are struck by lightning, your neurons can be rewired. Your cells become charged and can cause a change in your dopamine and serotonin neurotransmitters. If you are struck once, you are more likely to be struck again. It may not be true, but it is certainly poetic. With you I was standing in an open field on the worst storm I’d ever seen. There was something calming about your strike coursing through my body, reminding me I can feel. It happened so fast, so quickly, a shock mid stride and wholly unexpected. And good. It felt so good.
Scientifically, I can only remember that it hurt. A scarless pain with too many metaphors to pick from. A silence of loving steady trying to look past the words. The empty storm moved inside me, remembering. Remembering. Remembering to be thankful I was able to feel and it must have been enough. The blood inside me burned collecting ash deep within my stomach.
I once read you can’t really remember something, you just remember remembering. The entire day I was shaken for all the false memories it allows. My dreams were so vivid all those times I woke up alone, I could’ve sworn I felt your body against mine. Did I ever really hear those words you spoke? I traced your shoulder blades with my finger writing love notes you would never bother to feel. You can’t remember pain, you just know it hurt. No nerve carries memory to the brain, but my chest crushed when I found the notes you wrote. The letters with intention and your bright outlook from before.
I never found out what went wrong. I was left to question and move on, because what else is there to do? My mother told me when the clasps of my necklace falls to the front it means someone is thinking of me. She said to move it backward and always make a wish. I wished for you so frequently the words no longer made sense. We all know the trick, you say something over and over and meaning becomes lost. The word becomes sticky in your mouth wondering the original intention of each syllable. All I wanted was a sign you were thinking of me too, that my lonely letters might reach you.
I am no phoenix, I did not rise from the destruction. I let the ash consume me, trying to grow in the dark. As a child I did the experiment. The lima bean still grew in the closet, sprouted long and white. I was so sad, did it know what it was missing? The sun could’ve made it strong, instead it grew silently. I looked at my fingers, pale color and freakish bones. So delicate are the memories where I want to remember what you said. The words were so lost in the remembering it became worthless to do. It happened, it must have. Remembering was enough as your name became foreign and forgotten.
Here I stand in the field with my arms over my head. I am more likely to be struck again and all the heartbreak will be worth it.