Keepsakes

Every person you fell in love with left a piece of themselves behind. They didn’t leave it voluntarily. You took it, and you kept it. Unknowingly. Maybe you hid it in a place where you thought you wouldn’t chance upon it frequently. And when you met someone new, you did your best to hide all evidence of it. And you were very successful at it. You developed a knack for burying it just out of reach. It remained there, deep within. No, not waiting in a sinister manner to pounce upon you when you least expect it. It just was there. It lived there and it breathed there. It was alive. It fed on nostalgia, on your memories, on tears that once choked you (which now quench its thirst).

You were too afraid of losing any of them, or maybe you just didn’t know what else to do with them. You kept collecting these pieces, never throwing any out, never emptying the cavity, filling your little live treasure chest with the way they made you feel, the presents they brought you, the sounds of their voices, the warmth of their hands, their thoughts, their words, their love. And soon everyone had left and the chest was full and there was no room for more.

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