Starting point

I have been feeling like a ghost.

I vaguely remember waking up one morning with a feeling of air embracing me, like a light-weight force field keeping the world outside.

It’s nothing like that time when, in the middle of campus, I suddenly felt like everything was two-dimensional and made of sintra. The world was a meticulous stage set put up exclusively to fool me. But that’s not what it looks like today.

Imagine constantly needing warmth and coolness at the same time. Imagine getting burnt or frostbitten each time because you couldn’t find the perfect lukewarm. Actually, imagine that your skin is just layers and layers of cotton and you don’t really feel much at all.

You’d think it feels like poetry. You’d think it was a glorious feeling to feel like poetry, but I’m starting to doubt that’s so.

What I meant to say is — it’s January. Early into the second week and I still haven’t said hello to you, or said goodbye to December for that matter. I had given myself cold hard deadlines for learning how to let go of things, but my fingers weren’t quite warm enough to move. That’s just another way of saying I’m still staring at the scars. And I’m still trying to un-learn the dangerous idea that what I feel is beautiful.

***

I’ve lost track of the story that I was trying to write,

but if you have the depth in your soul, maybe you were still seeing it. Maybe you saw all the things that have been happening in my quiet, unruly life.

M came back. But conversations aren’t what they used to be.

They aren’t what they used to be with anyone.

I wrote one letter, and no more.

My soul-mates are many more than I thought, but they are less alike to me than I hoped.

***

I feel like a poem—

one that the writer abandoned half-way through; she stepped off the stage and said she’d never try again. I feel like I disappointed her by not being the poem she wanted to say. I feel like she wanted me to be funny, to make people laugh and love her, and I feel like I made her realize she was lonely. I feel like the loneliest poem she had ever tried to write.

What’s bizarre to me is how things quickly become normal after you’ve given them enough time. I have moved homes — literal and metaphorical — so many times in the past four months that it has started to feel normal to be in between.

Like on airplanes, when you’re actually nowhere on earth. Leaving was strange and arriving was unnatural. That’s what it felt like, but drifting? It felt like home.

I am constantly finding new homes, never the ones I am looking for, just like this isn’t the letter I intended to write.

I am always finding new places to come from. But for some reason, I am never starting over.

I’ll see you soon.

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