I feel like I should miss you. I feel like something must linger, some pain, some longing, something to remind me that once in my life, my heart held a singular place for you. I feel like I owe it to us to keep on hurting even after it is over, a sort of tribute to everything we had, a temple to us-shaped years when we shared our lives.
But there is nothing.
I root around myself and I am puzzled by the emptiness. I can find no trace of you, so I try to place you where you used to be. Here are my lips which fit perfectly against your mouth, when they used to dance while we lay in shadows. I look at my hands that used to itch strangely when they were near yours, always so starved to be touched by you. Here are my arms that held you so many nights and days before, never ever getting enough. I feel my skin, but it doesn’t echo your name anymore. Where are you?
Shouldn’t love end like a bomb? Shouldn’t there be debris and violence and fire and anguish? Shouldn’t I be drowning in darkness and grief? The tears came in a flood the night you admitted that you deliberately broke my trust for the final time, but they never came again. I’ve been looking for them in the songs we used to listen to, in the words you wrote to me, on the side of the bed that remains undisturbed. They’re not there.
I am looking for shrapnel in my broken heart, but I can’t find any. Does this make me a bad person? Does it make me a psychotic, unfeeling human being? Am I doing everything wrong?
It is quiet. There are snatches of you in my head, but I see your face much as I’d see a stranger’s in my periphery. Just a glance, too quick to make any tangible impact. In mere seconds, I will have forgotten already. Maybe that is how our goodbye is supposed to be.
Sometimes the death of love isn’t a brilliant supernova.
Sometimes it goes away like held-in breath finally exhaled, a simple farewell to the air we used to breathe together. There is relief swirling softly with hints of light sadness, suspended and waiting for the next warm wind to take them to a better place.
Let me take one last look at you as I walk away.
I find that I am not bitter nor broken, still gratefully whole, and wherever you may be, I hope you are too.