Sometimes I sit quietly and wonder if the old you knows you still hold my heart within your heart. I wonder where my heart fits within the confines of the new you. I wonder what the new you is like. What is she doing? What is she watching? What is she eating? Does she still like the feel of salt water upon her skin, the taste of the sea, bitter and grainy in her mouth? Does she still gaze up at the sky, and say, ridiculously, we should have joined the Mars One Project? Is she eating all things organic now, reading all things new aged, learning how to walk, dress, talk, and live, from all things “self help?” I wonder where you are, the you who used to call me sweet nothings, the you who used to see inside my soul. The you who used to need me.
It’s funny to think the same me is sending something out to the new you. The same old words for you to hold in your brand new hands, to touch with new fingerprints, words to be looked upon with eyes that are now, I guess, enlightened and cleansed. I wonder if you were to read this, how would the new you hear it? Can your new mind filter and tell that the old me, the same me, still loves you…the real and only you.
I wish it were you and I we were sending to each other: The old you and I, boxed up in parcels en route to the beginning. I would take the beginning back if it would mean I could reverse the momentum between becoming the old and new you, if it would mean your happiness. As if it could be so simple or if you could separate the old and the new in you or I, or anyone? I try to remember the beginning and not the end. I wonder how we got from there to here and I find myself searching for you again.
I search for you in the light and in the shadows, in the gentle wind passing through the spaces between my fingers. I search for you in the friendly smiles of people passing by; I even search for you in my own reflections, mirrored in the windows of passing cars. I search for you on and off the map, and every trail ends with me reaching for the ghost of you.
On my last night in Budapest I walked, haphazardly, into an open-air market with hanging, colored lights and a jazz band playing in the background. I walked slowly through the sound and the air, as I moved among the stalls, I realized I was searching for you. I searched in long forgotten places, tucked away corners, and hiding spots, and still, I couldn’t find you. Finally, I gave up and went back to the loneliness of a hotel room. I opened the window so wide to let in the night air and the smell of rain. The rain began to beat down. I fell asleep listening to its drumming, its off-beat rhythm. I wanted to reach for you, but you were not there. I wanted to call you, but I knew neither the old nor the new you would answer.
I tell myself, I am too old to have a broken heart, that men my age should have built up and immunity already, built up an immunity to pain and heart aches. I tell myself that this new you is bullshit, that you just wanted to leave to fuck other men. I tell myself that you are a whore. I tell myself that I am better off. I tell myself that the next time you see me I will be buff and accomplished and holding a trophy girl. I tell myself that you would beg for me back. I tell myself I would say, ‘nah girl, the new me can’t jive with you, whoever the fuck you are.”
It’s early now. The sunshine hits my face; the taste of coffee is on my lips. I watch the people walk by, seeing them do things I wish we could do. Holding hands, talking to each other, laughing and smiling, they kiss goodbye and part for work. I no longer want to watch and I find myself looking away, bored with seeing other people’s happiness, and ordinary being. In truth, I could never settle for ordinary.
At this window I wait like a dog knowing the hour his master comes home. I wait for the old to become new, the new to become old. The day to become night, the night to become day, I wait. Waiting for you, old and new, all of you and all of me to find our way back to each other again. How long can I wait? When does forever becomes too long. Like that dog, sooner or later I will have to take a piss.