I am in your city.
I am in your city and even though I can’t see you, I feel you. I feel you in the hot air on my neck, in the little sweat beads on my brow, in the smoke that’s lingering in the air. I feel you in the haze I see coming up over the mountains and in the way it’s never totally dark. I can’t help but wonder if you’re around, if we’re near each other.
I’m a little bit consumed with the maybes.
Maybe you’re here, maybe you’re there. Maybe I’m on your block, on your street, in your neighborhood. Maybe you’re around the corner or we missed each other at the café by mere minutes.
And the biggest maybe of all.
Maybe somewhere out there…we’re still a we.
Maybe in another universe we ran into each other. And we laughed and hugged awkwardly and remembered what the other person smelled like. And you said you missed me and I said I know. And we were in each other’s lives once again – even for a minute.
Maybe in another universe I texted you back. I said I still think about you too. I admitted there’s still a chunk of my heart that’s marked by your fingerprints. I told you it broke my heart when you didn’t choose me. That I think it broke both of ours when you left behind the big sky for the big city.
Maybe in another universe we weren’t bad for each other. I didn’t yell and you didn’t drink. I didn’t enable and you didn’t take advantage. I didn’t shut down and you didn’t leave. Maybe, somewhere out there, we were actually okay. Maybe we were more than okay.
Maybe we were everything.
But this isn’t another universe, and you are not a maybe. I don’t know if you’re here or there or on the block or around the corner.
I may be in your city, but I’m essentially a stranger.
So I’m going to stop thinking of other universes, of possibilities, of maybes. I’m going to swallow the knowledge that you’re here and I’m here and that all it would take would be one message, and those here’s would be together for real. I’m going to live in a universe without you and leave the other ones as just that.
And if I see you in a café around the corner, I’ll smile politely between sips of overpriced coffee.
And then I’ll walk away.