S is for Seçkin
When we met at the playhouse, I saw the ghost of Dickens in the stairwell. When we went outside, breath plumed around us, and you said you could smell the snow.
Your kiss is warm light in the attic. You take the blood diamonds from my ears and place them on the shelf in the corner. Then you take me to bed.
Last night I saw you in a dream. I woke up in a panic and washed all the dishes in the sink. I wiped down the kitchen, moved by an unnamed anxiety. On the street, my breath trembled, and my thoughts branched out into the cold extremity. It was not until late afternoon that I remembered the dream: I saw you at arm’s length. Then closer. Your proximity. That was all.
Now, every time a man walks into the room, I am disappointed when he isn’t you.
The puppy is teething and the muffins are burnt. The coffee is weak. We smoke a cigarette and watch the pink sun set down the hill.
What’s the worst that can happen? you asked to console me. I laughed a hard laugh. The worst already happened a long time ago. Every time I close my eyes, it happens again. Of course, I can’t say this out loud. My mouth is a wound. It festers. I want to speak, but the words bleed internally.
Yesterday morning, you told me you were going back to Berlin. The puppy screamed like a howler monkey. I tried to smile and said I would miss you.
Later I cried in the washroom. My hair hung heavy and the tooth ached at the thought of it. I went down for breakfast, and you fed me bread and tomatoes. I was already lonely for you when you sat beside me.
When we decided to drive to New Orleans, everyone advised me against it. They said it would hurt more to grow closer, but I didn’t care. I wanted to spend ten days alone with you in a car.
The country unfolded over the dashboard. You sang Turkish ballads and fed me pistachios out of your hand. I had just opened my mouth when my mother called me home for the funeral. She said I would regret it forever if I don't pay my respects, but what I have always regretted is that we didn’t keep driving south and south and west into the future.
Instead we turned back, ran out of gas, got a flat, sat for the eulogy, and kept going until we hit a dead end in Detroit.
Behind the diner, I followed the signs upstairs to a parlor. The fortune-teller held open a rose-colored curtain. I shuffled the deck. The painters had been painting. The chemical smell. I cut the cards and breathed into my inquiry. I could see you in the alley out the window, but in the cards she saw another man.
We got back at sunrise. I slept one last time in your bed. You spent the next day packing your things, and I drove you to the airport. Then it was over and I was alone. The lady at the laundromat fed me with her pity.
When I called you desperate from the racetrack, the connection was bad, and you couldn’t hear the walls crashing around me. I tried to escape, but you said not to come to Berlin. I was a girl, and your voice was so hard. I had to break it like a toy.
After that, I spent more and more time with your friend Burkan. Until we culminated the solstice.
Years later, I walked two hundred miles back across continents, retracing my steps to see you in Istanbul. My feet bled, and a white wind swept over the Bosphorus. I left a crystal on the altar, but you weren’t waiting for me at the gates. For three days I wandered through a labyrinth of towers and domes, lost in my dream of the city. Everything beautiful. I have never been so alone.
Now I see it all like a projection. I can’t quite recall who I was. Just a young girl in love. Thin. All skin and bone, a stream of gold hair, such beautiful and ugly thoughts. As if it happened to someone else, and I am just hearing about it through the cracks in her voice.
Copyright 2016 | Pet Murmur