Check In Time

I waited a long time for you, stayed well past the anger, past the point where I no longer saw romance in your eyes, and even past the point where I no longer wished to find it in my own.

You stopped being a mistake I once made, evolved into a friend I thought I had. But you curled beneath the covers, jabbing a middle finger at those of us on the outside. And that was fine too, for a while, as I’d been trained to be patient with friends. You forgot, however, that patience is not infinite.

But it struck me, as you checked in — as you periodically are wont to do — that it wasn’t me you concern yourself with. Rather, you wished to know if this piece I wrote was for you, or if that song was about you. Am I this character or she, in that poem? As is true with most artists, remembering loves, you are in none of my work and all of it. She is not you; you were never her.

Your words are lies, as evidenced by the way you are absent when I call, unhearing when I speak, unavailable when I text. We do not share – instead, you check to see if I have erased you from my heart.

I filled the space you once took in my heart with spackle, tears, sadness, and a bit of hope … and she, who has brought a chisel and determination. So I invite you to no longer check in, to haunt someone you care about. I have not erased you, since you asked, and would not take it back.

You are too valuable a lesson in what never to do again.

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11 thoughts on “Check In Time

  1. It would appear that lots of us have experienced the same things. And yet there are those who maintain the belief that no other person can truly know the pain, the anguish, the waning of hope and the longing that seem to be fairly common feelings and experiences. Thank you Bill, for your ability and willingness to put those feelings and experiences into words for those of us without your gift.
    Keep writing Bill, I’m still reading.

    1. Thanks, Mary. I wish I could claim it as noble, but in truth, the words hurt far less out, than in. It is as if the words were shards of glass. It’s easier to get them all out at once, than allow them to cut me to ribbons inside.

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