The Savage Garden

The phone fizzes again. More platitudes, another long ream of letters that say nothing at all. I skip across the square, hazelnut ice cream in my hand. I wish he were here to see the city as the sky rolls towards dusk, but he won’t be by my side ever again. Tears prick at the corners of my eyes, I’m surrounded by so much beauty, but I cannot be light inside. Anchored to the heart of a blind man. This city has so many couples wandering through it, sitting on benches, staring at the falling water of illuminated fountains, laughing. I try not to resent them.

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Later, walking through the leaves just starting to fall, through unfamiliar streets. I feel a slow stab, where the dying star in my chest is busy collapsing. A flare of light that casts a long shadow. We stop at a church, all gothic towers and slim stained windows. I stare at it until the tears are dry. His face is disappearing, as surely as the faces of angels in the glass are worn thin by a hundred years of another star.

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