Maybe it’s just me.
But my memories are anchored around words. Built around things that were spoken rather than seen.
I don’t remember the colour of your bedsheets. Except that you thought it looked like a picnic blanket. Because picnic blankets are chequered and your tuna sandwiches always tasted better in bed.
I forget which side of your face your mole is on, but I know it’s on your good side. Or what you wore on our first date. Except that you offered to change into something more formal.
I forget what your room looks like in the morning, but I know the curtains are drawn closed and the alarm is barely audible. Because you always maintained that the best way to start your day is to wake up slow.
I don’t remember the stretching exercises you taught me, or the movies we watched, the card games we invented or the recipes we attempted – except that you always stopped to check if I was still interested.
I forget if you shed a tear or waved back when i said goodbye. Just that you said you would not stop me this time.
I don’t remember what our last sunset looked like – but it must’ve been beautiful – because you said it seemed like the sun was putting up a fight not to sink into the horizon. That the sparse, straight clouds looked like claw marks clutching onto the last minutes of day time.
You said it reminded you that sometimes, even lost battles are worth fighting.
Like a quiet night sky that douses even the most fiery sunset. Maybe someday, our photographs will be reduced to nothing but a reminder of our youth. And everything we saw together will fade into a blur. Leaving just your words to twinkle through the darkness.
Finding their way back to me on a still night. Knocking on my door unannounced and uninvited. With memories that I dismissed as tattered, yellow, too old to survive.
Catching me off-guard as I drown in emails, hum an old song, make polite conversation, or fall in and out of sleep. Jolting, startling and creeping up on me with a strange aftertaste of nostalgia. Anytime, anywhere, without cause.
Your words and I are playing an unfair game of hide-and-seek.
And since you already know all my favourite hiding places, the least you can do is count to 100 before coming out to find me.