Playing Over.

I dreamed that you were gone.

But waking, the nightmare began.

Playing over.

Such naïveté! To safely imagine the endless moments ahead.

More time to hold hands and grab onto our fading childhood together.

To pull it close to our faces like a dusty mirror, and bask in the comfort of seeing shared history.

To blow the cobwebs off memories-turned-myths and shake our heads in laughter and suspended belief.

This pitted sinking feeling that catches me off guard like a shot to the stomach, in some forgotten moment. Driving, sipping tea or completing an otherwise benign task.

I stop short in horror and remember again, how you were stolen from us…

One day would I accept your absence? Let go of all that’s left. A deep loss emanating from within.

From the love within.

Love built on inside jokes, whispered conversations in midnight darkness, drunken stumblings down rainy Liverpool streets, your voice joining mine, echoing the lyrics to some soul classic, or the tune of the summer.

The ease of a familiar, long known face appearing readily at birthday drinks, ‘let’s not leave it so long next time?’ 
Sometimes lives lived mere miles apart, yet time slips past between visits. 
But, years melt to seconds, as smiles and arms envelope, safe in the familiarity of a comfortable childlike embrace.

And now, how to turn this gaping hollow, this visceral injustice, into gratitude?

To recognise the blessings of you, of us, together, which I’m all too acutely aware and alone with, in this void. 
Can this anguish be cast away like a wave, and take shape into something beautiful. Something else, resembling the love from which it rises?

Perhaps inside me, a hopefulness awakens. Yes, gratitude for these beautiful memories you left behind, etched into my mind, spanning decades, that only we shared, and have now achieved our immortality within.