It never struck me as odd that you were searching for your own denouement; I had long since been craving for mine, and in that aspect we were always perfectly matched. Neither was it disarming when we picked our saddest songs and sacrificed them to each other. It was so normal, so obvious. They never felt like dedications, no, because the meaning we were chasing after was a sort of poetic double suicide. We wanted to be at the edge of each others’ knives, no more misery and no more regret soon to follow. We were always that kind, you and I. Endings were things we took well in our stride.
It was the suffering that neither of us could hold without breaking. The unending rotations of the clock, of the earth, of our solar system; the excruciating wait between the ever-changing destinations of the minute-hand. Time was the only mortal nemesis, and its kryptonite always shunned and cursed as a cowardly act.
But we liked to promise forevers. We liked to promise everything that we never had, everything that we would never have. All you had was your despair, and all I had was my sorrow, none worthy of being bartered in an exchange like ours. But you found me, and I found you, and we offered our catacombs as if they were Christmas gifts. Take it home, make it your own, make me your own.
I was always unwilling to be my own, anyway.
You always found something comforting about the beach and the waves dissolving themselves into the sand. Was it because you felt a sense of control as you walked alongside the ocean knowing it couldn’t exercise its power on you unless you gave it a chance? To live because that’s what you chose to do, not what you were practicing by default? Or maybe that’s just me, I don’t know. I’ve been making things sound extravagant since forever.
You’re always in the dark – in your photographs, in your mind, and in your bed. Nightmares absorbed into your pillowcase, premiering in the brief spans of your unconsciousness, because we’d dare not call it sleep and sound too hopeful. We’ve been afraid of that word
for all our lives, afraid of what it entailed. We spit it out of our mouths as if it were made of acid, like we couldn’t stand the vile taste of something that promised happiness and took it away just as easily.
You looked at trees for remembrance, I looked for forest fires. You sought slumber between your sheets, I sought mine in the sea. I spoke of times you’d rather forget, and maybe that’s why you fell silent at ‘we’. I buried all my secrets in your skin, I found all kinds of ways to avoid the end.
You ask me for our denouement, and I cannot even bring myself to end this –