The buildings have all exhaled their breath today, because you are not here.
All’s stale at school now, no terse vibrations shimmering up from the tiles, and my footsteps are leaden and without direction. The walls are only walls, and doors that just a few days ago could open to reveal you—they are now only doors and behind them, there lies not anything.
You are away, on a family vacation. Why does that hurt so personally? You have not deserted me here, but only left me to scrap about myself, trying to put back inside of me the aliveness you’ve untied. It is only that, when you left, you took all the air with you. There are no chances of glimpsing you in the hall, no possibility of a summons found under my door to meet you at day’s end. No way to reach you, I find the muscles I gloriously flexed have retracted in upon themselves. At your mercy, whatever strength I found in seducing your attentions rear on me and I am left small, unsure, as tremulous as I ever was.
So as it ever is, I wait, the basin of my stomach ripped in shreds. Subatomic particles of dread sift through these ripped shreds.
I become sick.
The electricity we had crackles and turns to ash, melting the floorboards below to burnt umber. I’m unfastened, adrift. No solidifying anchor at home, no shore to run aground where I live. How is it my power has grown hands, opened a window; how do I stay inside myself, not float away?
* this was written in 1993, when I was 20 years old, and I gave it to a 19 year old boy who was my summer crush.