you and me

Running Far And Wide In Search Of My Own Nourishment.

She remembers this rage when she thinks she’s made a mistake.

She remembers the feeling of starving, of hurting, of rejection, and of waiting. She recalls that she was the distraction. She knew he loved her, he just didn’t know, or love himself enough to love her the way she wanted to be loved.

She understood that when the newness of meeting her wore off, he was back inside the windstorm of his mind, unable to see, unable to hear her crying out for him.

She searches, opens cabinets, the fridge, the pantry, and peeks under the bed only to find memories of their early life together and nothing more.

She reaches for those memories, but they slip through her fingers like grains of sand because they are no longer a part of her reality. They’ve already passed. They are meals already digested, and words already spoken that are now empty.

She continues her search, as if the love they had is a tangible item and all she has to do is figure out where they left it.

He doesn’t meet her or offer help while she searches. Instead he watches her with mild curiosity as she races around, frantic, beating her head against the wall as the relationship dissolves like the sweetness of sugar into the bitterness of coffee.

She screams, she glares, she ignores, she loves, she’s silent, she works, she pushes and pulls, but he stays there, glued to the comfort of the rickety, splinter-filled chair he built for himself that he sits in day in and day out, pushing her down when she tries to join him.

She sneaks snacks from others who willingly hold their hands out to her, the stray cat. They pet her, and tell her how beautiful she is, and she shines like she once did for him. She feels guilty for taking their snacks.

She knows he has a plethora of nourishment frozen somewhere deep inside of him, and she wants to hold out for that. She tried chipping away at it, tried melting it, but she’s exhausted, and has forgotten who she is, and what she ultimately wants.

She runs far and wide, in search of her own nourishment. She looks for the love she already possesses inside of herself. She’s close. She smells it, can almost taste its sweetness, until she hears him calling for her.

She stops and turns, listening to the sound of his voice, basking in it. Finally he wants her, he sees her, he misses her, and so she happily runs back, jumping into his arms. He strokes her, kisses her, tells her how much he loves her and she relaxes into him.

However, the more she relaxes, the more distant he becomes yet again. She panics and clings. He pushes and shoves until she jumps down, leaving him to go hunting again. She decides to run as far as her legs will take her out into the darkness of the unknown.

She may end up on the other side of the world, but she doesn’t care so long as she can feel safe, and grounded and sustained on her own courage, love, and desire to blaze her own trail.

He calls after her again and she stops, listens, and once again basks in the sound of his voice. It’s farther away this time and she’s surprised at how far she’s come, at how far her legs have taken her. She listens to his voice, but for different reasons this time.

She memorizes its tone, the way he says her name, and she tucks it into a small pocket inside her heart before she turns and keeps running.

***

MelissaLeeMelissa Lee is a Seattle-based writer and artist. Her work has appeared in xojane.com and the Garland Court Review. She blogs about sexuality and writes erotica. You can contact her via email.

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