I lived in all seasons of my life at the same time. Since I woke up today, I have been to more cities than I can count. I remember the voice of each person I gave my heart to with an accuracy I could not even imagine putting down on paper. But even more, I remember the voices and faces of the countless others I befriended and forgot all about until a memory resurfaced. I was viewing my life at all times like slices placed carefully under a microscope. I did not know what I was trying to find, so when they asked me what was on my mind, I did not know what to say.
It had always been this way. Wherever I’ve gone, wherever I’ve sat, I could always feel the draw; these jumbled strings of memory pulling me like a twisted marionette. It was always in the corner of my mind, some old laughter which was now a song I couldn’t remember the name of, some room I couldn’t guarantee would still exist, and even if it did, it would not be the same; I have previously attempted to trace my steps to phantoms of my past, only to learn they didn’t care to stick around. I was, of course, the first to leave, so I couldn’t hold it against them either.
I did not know how to answer when people asked me if I were in good spirits. My calm was always accompanied with a loss I did not consider at first—when it happened. Only in hindsight did I stop to consider it. We must go forward; I understood it better than most. But all lives I’ve left behind, all futures I did not see pan out deserved, perhaps, in better hands, a completion I did not wait around for. As angry as I have been for being left behind, in the overall tally of things, I’ve been the one who was leaving, continually. Maybe, out of habit or worse, out of disregard for anyone and anything else.
My life so far has been a sentence skipped, a draft left midway, a story left untold for so long, I didn’t intend to tell it anymore. Perhaps, these fragments only wanted to be told. It was a terrible impasse.