no place like home

Before I left, we had this little knock that we'd do when we were visiting or whatever. It was a little thing and we never talked about it but she'd always know it was me and I'd always know it was her.

I still remember everything about when I left. I was wearing my old green Converse and we were drinking coffee liqueur on the porch of a party she was having. She was smoking; I'd just quit but I figured she could use the company. I was feeling restless and it wasn't the kind that was going away. The more we drank, the more we talked, the worse it got, and it never happened that way. Before then she was always a calming influence. Whoever else was on the porch went inside and there was a pause. Then I said, "Hey, I've got to go." I kissed her on the forehead and said I was sorry. I shouldered my bag, went home, packed a few things, and hit the road.

After a while I got new shoes. I started smoking again when I stopped drinking. I did a lot of traveling, on bus, on foot, with my bike. I worked a lot of jobs that didn't go anywhere and I was losing money--not fast, not exactly, but fast enough. I found myself back in the town where we used to live and I didn't know who else to call.

I knocked on her door just like we used to, and after a while she opened the door and looked at me like she didn't know who I was. And I don't think she did at first. "It's me," I said. "I'm back."

She let me in. Everything was different inside. I don't think any of the furniture was the same. I sat on the new couch and watched her. She was the same person but there was something different about her mannerisms. She made tea. Apparently she was drinking tea now. She sat down across from me.

"You know you can't stay here."

"I know. I just didn't have anywhere else to go."

1 comment:

Ayn Rand said...

Hah hah, I was expecting a "man on the run from his past" style action adventure (obviously isn't happening given your length habits) or some existential twist but I must say I wasn't expecting a joke at all.