As you grow older, you realise there are many ways to say goodbye The eyes that used to meet along the length of an empty
hallway, now averted to admire a distant mark
The phone that used to ring, now swathed in soundless silence
The smile that used to slip through a sea of faces, now retreated into an escutcheon of thin-pressed lips
Unfinished sentences, unspoken prose, expired hopes –
You learn that goodbyes never come wrapped in red and neon
on the tail of caution but show up uninvited at the door
They rarely come in conversations but in the earth-shattering wordlessness of a turned back receding into distance and time; Never live up to expectation but leave with questions in their wake
And when they arrive, always late, incessantly messy,
you can never make these guests feel at home–
They open every door and trammel through every room,
leave the doors open for the nights when you’ve strung up
enough courage and even then, you shake at the sound of their breath, quiver at the thought of calling them by name so you trap their whispers in your mind, in the bitter aftertaste that lingers in your mouth, the echoes that shake up your thoughts. There, they resound endlessly till they have robbed every breath from your lungs, seared themselves into the pages of your history.
And you learn the hard way that goodbyes are never easy but memories are the hardest part.
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