I’m just so damn sentimental. I kept all those things from so long ago, I kept them in my closet, in my car. I kept them when I moved cities all the way to Nashville and I kept them stowed away in memories once everything was gone. I kept all the old letters and the stupid invitations; I kept all the records of our little conversations. I kept all the old photos, until one day I burned them, and even then I made sure there were copies somewhere just in case. I was on the train this morning with my old notebook, little swirls on the page became pictures of you, your eyes coming through my memory, my hands working involuntarily. I lost myself in it, in making the curve of your smile, not again, I thought, not again. I lost myself in the things I tried to forget, in the rounding of a shoulder and the way your hair used to fall in front of your face. I knew people were watching, I had missed my stop a few times, but truth be told I had nowhere in particular to be, and I didn’t have any pictures left. The bus driver lurched back and forth, and the bus emptied out, a slow trickle of backpacks and the clunking of hard steps off steep platforms.
“What is that?”
Someone from behind me inquired, I didn’t realize we were alone now. Just me, this guy, and the memories.
I said all I could, I said “it was everything”. I’m too sentimental, I know it too. I couldn’t explain why everything, I couldn’t articulate that everything was the way your smile broke and everything was the way you laughed, and everything, well now everything is nothing.
I shouldn’t have said that, not to the stranger on the train, his eyes quickly darting back to his feet, my response perhaps too honest or perhaps too tragic.
I stepped off the platform, holding the book to my chest, wondering when this particular hole would close.
Wondering why I am so damn sentimental.