Coordinates

I intended to travel alone,
but the mind is that clingy companion,

impartial to longitudes and latitudes, 

unwilling to be left behind.
So, it’s one foot in front of the other 

down eroded alleyways, 

along picturesque trails, 

squeezing you 

out 

with a frenzy of new images.
But when the darkness takes over,

issuing stars into the night sky,

your absence seeps in like a carnivorous vapor, 
seething particles consume my mouth, until smiling burns, 

and my eyes, until the tears come (and they do),

even my ears! until endless chatter aches as much as endless quiet,

devouring my skin so slowly and methodically until eventually,

I don’t recognize myself.
By ‘your absence’, I mean the way you come into my world everyday
without…being…here.