On a cleaning spree, I stumble on an old black leather bag. Cracked at the seams and several other places, it takes me a minute to place it. It used to be my identity. Quite nondescript and definitely not from the high street, my hands trembled as i pulled its tasseled zip. The golden hands moved apart in a grand reveal sort of way – to show me the mess this bag held, of years gone by.
I take a deep breath, hands still quivering and reach in to empty out the contents.
One by one. And thus, let the memories (finally) go as wisps of smoke into the thin air.
I reach in to find an old lip balm. A favorite for when you kissed my lips raw and but I still wanted the color to show. Several bobby pins, all deformed from holding back my thick curls as you devoured me – running you hands down my arms.
A small bottle of perfume, almost empty. The scent you loved as you inhaled it while whispering sweet nothings in my ears. Several bills of coffees, from dates where all we wanted to do was stay up late listening to the other’s stories and having a good laugh.
More bills, now of cheap alcohol and candies that sustained me after you left.
Little heart shaped chocolates, that you always bought for me, now past their consumable date. Quite the irony. Three postcards, crumpled, slightly faded, from the times we spent at hotels around the town.
And finally, my little black book. Full of stories, thoughts and illustrations. Of me. Of you. Of us. I flip through the handwritten notes – more thoughts and things I wanted forgotten. Ticket stubs, some polaroids, all bringing that searing pain back – again.
And then, like a joke from the universe, a brown paper dramatically falls down on the ground.
I know I didn’t write it, because my memory is still just as fresh. Then my hands tremble as I find not just one, but several sheets of paper. All of them with hints of your cologne. Your scrawled script visible through the thin paper.
You left without any words — and now I have too many in my hands. All from you.
I feel faint, my legs give away. I support myself as I brew a cup of coffee. Not because I like it, but because you did. I make it just the way you liked it. Little milk, about three spoons and brown sugar aplenty.
It is going to be one long night.