Dont deserve this ghost, but I hope she stays.
I booked the nicest suite in the hotel by the beach. I lit the tea light candles around the room and made it into our oasis. I got caught in a rainstorm with you and had to run through it in sandals so we could crawl back under the covers and spend the night accompanied by the flicker of candlelight and your skin against mine. I studied the art murals. Okay, that’s a lie. I studied you while you studied the art. I watched as your face lit up on the boardwalk. I shared my ice cream and admired the smile on your face as you finished the cone. I traded in our ski ball tokens for matching candy bracelets. I braved the ocean to chase you to the ends of the earth. I smiled as we downed our third round of cocktails on the sand. I sipped frosé until I lost all inhibitions and turned into a sexual deviant. I watched as you admired each freckle on my sun-kissed skin, wishing you would reach down and press your lips to each one that swept over my chest. I laughed as you admired my curls from the salty air. I whispered I love you for the first time. And then I said it again. I giggled as you did a happy dance reading the dinner menu each night. I, poorly, resisted the urge to keep my hands off of you at the dinner table. I flashed my camera as you took your first bite, white wine draped between your fingertips. I captured the moment of you, peering into the sunset and taking a picture of the way it set over the lake with the American flag waving in the wind. I set the picture as my phone wallpaper. I interlaced your fingers in mine as we explored the town. I nibbled on hash browns after you took a picture with your first Dunkin’ donut. I giggled like a child when you whispered, “thank you,” each time I pressed a soft kiss to your forehead. I smiled for bathroom photo shoots. I felt the safety of your arms around me as you clung to me in the pool. I fell in love. Over and over again. Harder than ever. With no way of resurfacing for air.
Chapter Two: Hope in My Days
The months grew warm
With you, there by my side
Filling that void, the one he’d left inside
And I had you
The ink spilled on the page
No longer spelled grief
I was busy writing love songs
like you’d never leave
You came out of nowhere
Still dreaded the cold
When the well bled dry,
I had someone I could hold
All your demons, oh I knew
Fought them off with a sword
Held you tighter when they pushed through
Now you rewrite the tale, blinded by rage
Paint me as nothing more than the villain,
Still taking up every page
I called out your name between whimpers and sighs, tears stinging my squeezed-shut eyes, as I clung to the nothingness that is now just your ghost.
I have yet to find a star that shines as brightly as you do.
One that illuminates the nights skies
the way your smile lights up a room.
Still, I keep searching.
All my dreams are of you
calling to say you miss me, too.
The good morning texts,
the late-night messages to greet you when you wake.
Counting down the weeks,
the days, the hours.
Knowing your smile will greet me soon.
Needy lips against my own,
weeks of greed and love and longing behind each kiss.
The warmth of your body
reminding me I’m safe,
reminding me I’m home.
Always needy for the comfort of you.
My lips still tremble, my hips still thrash, my body still aches, for only you. Only you. Always you.
You didn’t lose love, it’s still here. It still burns brighter than all the stars in the galaxy. Even on the darkest of nights – it’s still there.
You’re my 4 am thoughts, alone in the silence of the night. You’re my 2 pm thoughts, a welcomed distraction in my work day when I’m aching to reach out and rest my hand on your thigh. You’re my 9 am thoughts, craving the warmth of you on all the cold lonely mornings. You’re my 8 pm thoughts, your head in my lap and my fingers through your hair. You’re my 11 pm thoughts, my fingertips aching for your skin to draw you impossibly closer.
If I squeeze my eyes shut, I can pretend your body is right here beside me again. I can pretend your hand is inches from mine, waiting for me to take it. I can reach out and feel your warmth. But then I open my eyes. It’s cold. And I’m numb.
“I’m giving up,” she finally cried.
But, still, she tucked the only key to her heart right there under the welcome mat – nestled safely for if her lover were to someday return. To someday come back home.
Jolting awake from the darkest of nightmares. Ones that petrify you and leave you with the taste of lead in your mouth. Or stirring from the warmth and goodness of a magical dream. One where you’ve come back to me. One where I can kiss you.
Either way, I can’t reach out and feel you. I can’t be settled. The unrest only lingers. And it all hurts just the same.
I wonder how many more planes I’ll watch—flying overhead just before they touch down—until I stop hoping one would bring you back to me.