The dark room had no light, save for a candle I had lit, leaving it to help me see my way around the apartment. I didn’t want the blinding lights, not even at night. Call it depression. Call it dramatic. Call it whatever you may. And then you pushed the door open, walking in. My heart leaped, and it ran to embrace you, before I could even shuffle my feet and get to you. I hadn’t seen you in forever. Strange, this encounter, strange, how I thought we would be strangers.

I sat next to you, stunned by your grace, the stars in  your eyes, the smoothness, the chocolate-covered dreams I wanted to taste, and the memories that attacked me. I drowned in a second, and then you called my name. I wondered when was the last time you had said my name out loud. How long it had been, how you had buried us underground, left me a complete mess, a train wreck, how my keys had stayed with you, how the bitterness in my mouth remained for months after. And here you were, offering me a sip of water. What thirst can be quenched with just a sip? What damage can be healed with momentary happiness? What words can be said, when all communication had stopped, had ceased?

You stayed with me. But at the sound of prayer, the calling for people to get up and pray, you were gone. I blinked once, twice, got up from the couch. Nothing. You weren’t there. I must have imagined it. I must be hallucinating. Someone once told me “Hope dies last.”

And so, I spent the night with the Ghost of you. I thought I heard you opening the fridge door, looking for something to drink. I got up, and found nothing. Nobody. And that’s when I knew, I was beginning to lose it. A friend advised me to bake a cake. Bake the cake, step all over it, then eat it all. Get rid of the memories. Get rid of the cake. Get rid of the sweetness. That’s the only way to kill the ghost, the ghost living in my house, in my kitchen, in my room, and worst of all, in my veins. 

But that would be a waste. That would be madness.


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