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The Silence

There was a girl who I passed every day next to the green sign on the street, but always forget to say hello to
She waved at me like we used to be awkward locker neighbors in high school,
Or like someone I met at a party one of us couldn't remember
Yesterday, I told her she didn't matter,
But I didn't say a word.
I didn't have to.
All there was, was
Silence
at first, I thought it killed her.
And now,
I think she hates me.
She doesn't care to walk down that same street anymore, or keep to the left so she doesn't bump into me.
In fact, I'm almost convinced she goes around the big building on 2nd just so she doesn't have to see me.
I pretend like I didn't say anything to make her feel -----
it wasn't what I Said,
Because I didn't actually say anything at all. Just silence.
The next day, I followed her to work.
She doesn't have a Job.
Her job is to avoid me on the street corner at all costs.
It isn't hard for her, because I haven't moved an inch since the day I said nothing to her,
So I follow her with my eyes.
I just stare at her, every time I see her, and pretend like we've never met before,
As if I never didn't already actually say a word.
And if my eyes couldn't meet a moving object that didn't hate me, I'd feel like rusty guitar strings collecting dust inside a cheap cloth case with a broken plastic zipper:
Neglected
A burden
Unnecessary
One day, i found my feet and decided she was good enough to walk near
I followed her and listened to her sing to herself, even though she knew I was there.
I'd follow her into parks, into bars, into buildings
Id listen to her voice echo through the room and bounce back at each other, in seamless sound waves,
In harmony,
in perfect rhythm
even though all I could understand was
Nothing
Just noise
Just silence
And before I had enough time to figure out what she was saying, she left
She left without slamming the door or asking me to leave her alone, or asking why my feet decided she was good enough today and not yesterday or last labor day weekend
She left in silence.
I followed her again
This time with my arms
Not to any place convenient or anything
It was cold, even though the weather was warm,
and it was loud, even though we never spoke.
She walked, and walked, and walked,
but she never sang to herself.
She didn't turn around and scream at my emptiness
And she sure as hell didn't ask me to leave her and her unimportance alone
She had a conversation
Not with me because there are no second chances,
Not with anyone else because it doesn't work that way,
But with herself.
She intellectually pondered quantum mechanics and the theory of evolution all without another person to share thoughts with
Her conversation was so interesting that trees hunched over and in to listen And the wind chimed in and they exchanged numbers
Again, I felt like the dusty guitar with no proper case
As if I was an inconvenient temp at an office job
who never quite makes the coffee right
Or the stubborn half of a cheap pencil that's impossible to sharpen
She wandered off and I followed her, this time with my heart
Because maybe I was wrong and she's the most important person I've ever met
Maybe I haven't found someone who mattered so much since I fell in love with bad communication and pages I couldn't turn fast enough
I followed her, but with quicker feet than when her voice gave me goosebumps
And With faster arms than when the trees bent down to eavesdrop.
I was breathing as steadily as a boat fighting an incoming tide
And she was walking as fast as---
I couldn't keep up with her,
And Now i was feeling like broken guitar strings without a case for sale
I felt worse than the weather and it made me guilty,
and it gave me goosebumps because I knew i was going to die

Which was ironic and suited
Because that day I told her she didn't matter
I thought it killed her.
But now I know she matters,
My heart needs new legs,
and all I am is silent.



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