This Place

I have looked forward to leaving this place for so long. In consequence, it has no loyalty to me. I may as well have left already. Still, some urgent red scribbling on a piece of paper catches my eye. I also notice the perfect alignment of a wine glass and an empty bowl of ice cream. But these observations instantly withdraw. They grow obscure and impregnable. I am forced to look away, if only to demonstrate some measure of decency. My easy relationship to this place is gone. I would like to object. I would like to insist that nothing essential has changed, but I know this is untrue. While everything remains scrupulously still, every aspect of this stillness is different. It is unhinged and shakes with rage. It is unimpressed by everything that I say – most of all by my insincere expressions of love. Clear enough, after all, that nothing can make me stay, that I am leaving on my own accord, that I am already looking elsewhere.

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