I still go back to the room sometimes;
Sliding my fingers along the charred walls.
You might find my fingerprints if you happen to visit -
A few here and there, on the walls, the table, the shelves,
And many next to the cracked picture frame still by the bed.
I looked for your prints too, but couldn't find them;
Nor the fragrance of your perfume, conditioner or body lotion;
Just an overpowering presence of charcoal and dust.
I hope you have found a better room somewhere;
I hope you really have been able to forget
These broken pieces and torn fragments
Like you said you would.
But in case you'd like to know,
There are two corners still intact -
The stool that I had sat and dreamt on,
Empty and bare, except when I sit on it to rest.
From there I see the other corner,
With things of yours that weren't destroyed -
Like the dressing table you had sat on
To put on your make-up before you left,
The oven where you baked those cakes
To take with you while I slept,
And those wine-bottles you emptied,
The wine glass with your lipstick still on it -
Just a few things that remain intact in all this mess.
I look around for things I can salvage.
No, I won't take anything that is yours;
Just your memories are heavy enough any way,
And I walk a lot these days, mostly by myself,
Singing songs, seeking love, meaning and hope.
No, what I look for is my pride,
Stowed away somewhere, covered in soot,
My ego that I had peeled away for you,
And my sense of self-esteem.
I've got a sack with me this time,
For I find them all in pieces -
Some burnt, some stained, some broken,
But I will take them with me, on my back,
In my little sack, to fix them with what I can find.
And before I leave, I turn around
To look at the room, hoping it's for the last time,
Though I realise we might be back here again,
You less likely than me for sure, and we?
Almost definitely not together.
But if you do come back here sometime,
Please see if you have the part of me that left with you -
I assume that you don't need it anymore -
You can place it on the bookshelf,
Not on the top shelf, just somewhere you can reach -
Maybe next to the charred pages of Kafka...