Creative Writing, Essays, Personal
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The Years

On the windowsill, my cat sits staring back at me — staring deep into the dark blue abyss of the night sky lit up by the skyscraping lights. I cough, he blinks. It isn’t a flinch but a look of curiosity at his sick man, feeling the icy chill of a wildfire spreading in his body. I should turn on the lights but I can’t. I couldn’t, bedridden alone. My mind is filled with foggy, gray memories of times long past but shouldn’t dreams be in color? I remember being eighteen gazing with wonder at the green plains, the first snow on the lawn just before dawn, ready to be carved by hands and shoes. Yet somehow, the memory of those years stops there. Just the pristine white snow. Next thing I know, I was in the shower, head down and angry. Angry and sad. Sad and broken. Or was it unfulfilled? I do not recall. 

The mind fog carries me through the next ten years. There was the heat and the humidity somewhere in the mountains of the island I call home. I was stuck sweeping leaves. No, it was not at a grave. It was asphalt, paved to make way to nowhere. The only way out was on a train to grandma’s. Every weekend, I made the trip. Well, almost. There were the drunken nights out snacking on street food and breakfast. I indulged in things I couldn’t but could afford. The years with alien experiences dug Nazca Lines I still can’t rub away. Again, I can’t remember how or why. I remember stumbling. Occasionally, some mistakes were made, tears were shed.

I am not a time traveler. Memories serve no purpose except to inform and reform your person. Did you know that every time you recall the past, you inadvertently alter it in some way? It is never stored the same or booted up the same. Did I really jump off the cliff and somehow didn’t die?

Fifteen years is fifteen years. Somehow I’m still here. I am trapped by myself. I am surviving, maybe this is the beginnings of a thriving. 

My cat meows and interrupts. No, he is right, I am getting ahead of myself. Everything can fall apart. There is no destination for this journey. So I continue to write about every stop along the way. Rather, I try to write. Sometimes, it is simply too overwhelmingly painful. I give my all, bare my heart only to be told, “I’m sorry”. I don’t hide, I know who I am now. I am an amalgam of experiences, composed of stories that I hold to be true. Complicated, but I am just looking for harmony. A simplicity to comport my complexity. Authentically carry me. Maybe I’m Holden. I look back to the pink sunsets along the soft, black sand beaches. The crystal blue sea, washing and rinsing — remaining ever so clear.

I just want to bike along with the breeze. I want to sit on the riprap and stare at the sea.

I wonder what my cat sees.

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