i was roaming your street the other day.
the one that housed your residence
however periodic or transient it really was.
i remember it as a time
when the darkness of others was amplified
& their suffering was prevalent, albeit expected & seemingly contrite.
it's like it didn't even matter.
and you were really good at perpetuating that particular notion.
but when you're eighteen, everything is huge, vivid... memorable.
so i remember, even still, today.
when you're eighteen,
people fit into neat, compartmentalized little boxes.
and they're them & you're just... you.
you would never even guess that the plagues & problems that ate at them could ever even touch you.
but as you grow older, you realize that people are just people.
and they don't fit into the neat little compartments that you've built for them.
everyone spills over into everyone else, overlapping & swirling together in one big pool of humanity.
but in that moment, in that year, all we would do was climb up onto that ledge & sit.
we just breathed in & out, seeing things.
the leaves were falling, the wind was howling.
and we just listened.
because when you're eighteen, that's all you have to do.
sometimes i want to climb up there
& retrieve the memories that are trapped on that ledge -
because i know they're there. promising me part of myself -
if i only dare to knock on the door, climb the stairs, & venture out.
but i know i never will.