[All week I have been trying to write a piece about something that struck me as vitally important last Sunday morning. About a someone who had been overlooked. And only now I realise I am writing a story. Dreaming a fiction of your reality. And that is as bad as forgetting you altogether. I realise this is a familiar pattern I fall into. Filling the holes of unknown with imaginary detail. This is wrong. I have no right to claim any story but my own. So no cohesive piece today. Just the random threads pulled apart from my attempt to weave a blanket to keep you warm.]
I see you. Sitting. Legs folded. Thin carpet beneath you. Light enters the room, and falls as empty angles across furniture. You don’t notice the light. Similarly it ignores you, but does not choose to leave. It lingers. Like time. Like breath held too long. A thought grown too strong. The thought that your feet could be anyones but your hands are all mine. And they fiddle with each other. Ever restless. Ever impatient.
They called you the one with the quiet voice. They say you lived on the periphery, whispering thin secrets that we could only catch by the edges. They say you lived a quiet death. A silent puncture, and a gentle deflation. They say you died in a place named after echoes. They say that’s all we hear - the cyclical repetitions of the things you shared with us.
I never sent a postcard. From nowhere. For no reason. I never answered the phone, before you’d even dialled. I never held my breath to hear you speak. I never kept your letters between the pages of my books. I never made you sigh. I never saw the way your hair fell in the morning. I never reached for your hand in the middle of the night. I never laid flowers on your grave. I never knew you enough to forget you.