I am twenty one years old and you are a little older but it always seems like a lot older and then one night you call me and say Can I Come Over? and I say Yeah Okay, If You Want To and I am in my pyjamas but I get dressed a little, or I put on a bra at least and you arrive at the door in approximately two minutes and I say, Hi Are You Okay? and you say Yeah I Just Need To Talk To Somebody, so we go upstairs and into my bedroom and I sit down on the bed and you stand up with your back to me and you stare at a wall of photos.
So I am nervous because you don’t usually do this and I have been in love with you for a long time and we have been acting weird lately, like, I have been sleeping in your bed a lot but we never kiss or anything like we did before.
And then Your body turns around and you suddenly say My Best Friend Killed Himself Today and I feel alarmed and rise to my knees and try to hug you while I am still on the bed and you are still standing and you are wearing a leather jacket that is brown, that I don’t like, and I am still wearing my pyjamas and you don’t move. And You are just standing there and Your shoulders feel wooden and so I recoil from the hug and I say I Am So Sorry and I think How? but I don’t ask How? I just sit down and say Are You Okay?
So You sit down too eventually and you drink a can of beer that you have brought with you and I say I Will Put On Some Music and I go to the CD player but I realize that you hate all of the CDs that I have but I know that I cannot deal with silence and I decide that I will play one anyway.
And I put on a jazz CD which you seem okay with and I decide that you would like to be distracted and so I talk at you, about anything I am thinking of.
Only now it is four years later and I do not remember any of the things that we talked about, but I remember that we were sitting with our backs against the wall and that our feet were hanging off the edge of the bed and that the space between us was approximately the size of one human person and that one of my friends had died a month earlier and that, in that moment, I understood how you were feeling, somehow, even though now I cannot understand how either one of us was feeling, because time makes us forget things like that, fortunately.
And I remember that I showed you a poem that I loved then and that you read it carefully and told me you liked it also.
And I remember that when you left it was late and that I text you and said You Could Have Stayed Here, You Know, once I knew you were home already, and that you didn’t reply. And then the next time I saw you, there was a tattoo on your wrist.
I just remembered because I’m holding the book we read that night, and it seems to be the only thing that isn’t different about me.
This is how it works. Selective Memory. I can’t remember anything that happened the day before that one. I can’t remember anything that happened the day after.