Pictures of her standing in the middle of my room, hands on her hips, continue to drain the empty spaces of my dreams. Knowing as she always does, better than I, where I’d left my keys, my wallet, my spectacles, the mosquito bat. With a bottle of water in one hand, she’d pull a chair, and legs stretched, watch me work, while I, her legs.
That is her, waiting at the bill counter at the supermarket, trying to verify in her head if she had borrowed the right number to get the subtraction right. Simple math, I’d snigger. She will pretend she convinced me that she was ignoring me. I will let her assume she won.
She scares me with the amount of detailing she structures me with in her eye - the subtle nuances in my gestures, tones and very presence that she had so carefully, so fervently memorized over the years she stayed silent. The intensity knocks me off guard. And pretending to hold a deaf ear to it gets harder each time, it is almost infuriating.
Only when I wonder if it is time to throw her off the ground she was acclimatizing to, she holds her gaze with me for an instant too long, piercing me into every moment of co-existence she had breathed life into, without trying, without expecting. Nothing was ever on the platter, nothing had ever been.
For one, my t-shirt looked different on her, helping her flaunt her collarbone and everything. She had gotten into that frenzy last summer, when one by one, my favourite t-shirts went missing, one of each colour.
Last summer, when she sat in the garden and scalded her leg, pouring boiling hot tea, as she shamelessly gaped at the Vaseline on my lips, open-mouthed; no, I will not tell you what a man was doing with Vaseline.
The fool is, in all probability, writing something about me this very minute, I am sure. If only she would direct them at someone who can possibly reciprocate it all and reciprocate it well. And leave me alone and make me lie to her yet again that I do not miss her, that I do not miss yelling at her to wake up while I catch that extra fifteen minutes of sleep – sleep that was never that precious as those stolen peaceful minutes. Sleep, that she probably let go while ruffling my hair and secretly counting the number of grays, the knowledge of which she was sure to shove into my face when I least expected it.
She is now looking at something new, somewhere, and mentally making a note to describe it to me, telling herself that she would floor me with the idea. And I already know I will scoff it off, if only to see her rage in fury and call me names. She sucked at it as much as she did with the numbers.
I’ll be on my way now, thinking of her fake-punching me with all her might, with a messed up head that refuses to work when I get her anger up and simmering. I’ll be on my way home, where my clothes smell of her and where she belongs with me - she just can never know.