There’s that imprint that you left last time.
I found red lipsticks on the cup you left
Years ago and that our Niota used to try to match
Her lips for yours
Niota for whom I made a map to trace our pain and mark it.

Now and forever.
For no one to forget.
For no one to go on without her ghost by his or her side.
The whisper of her name hanging above us on summer days and winter nights.
Remember that time when you thought you saw her and I didn’t want to say anything?
You ran after that poor little girl while I stood there in the rain
My heart racing with your legs to embrace that little girl that looked like ours,
My hands clenching and asking for one more caress of her soft skin,
You came back to me with
A reopened wound and a fresh one next to it
Not knowing that what you did to you, you did to me too.
We stood there in the rain hoping to catch sight of her ghost walking behind that girl
Hoping that the girl was in fact our Niota and that she would turn at any moment and run to us.
“Let’s go home” I said.
Even when home was an expensive hotel
Where we drowned slowly, too slowly ourselves in alcohol and sex orgies
Using our flesh to quiet our heart
And every morning I cursed the Sun for
Coming out his room
When darkness had swallowed us whole
we would lay around naked, licking our wounds, keeping our drug bottles empty till the night.
We waited for the night like guards wait for the dawn
Like the addict twitching and swaying until that next fix.
All we had left of her was in her pink suitcase
The house was already sold, our dreams buried in her casket.
In our rare moments of lucidity we would put on gloves and go through the suitcase
Walking backward through the halls of memory
Letting the apple , mud and rose smells retell the moments and
give her back;
a little of her; anything of her rather than the abyss we lived in.
A couple of months later, we were put on the streets.
Our families stood aside like family members to lepers
Loving us safely at distance,
Afraid to catch whatever it was we had
We were free birds
We drank from rain
We ate from the drain
we spoke our minds
we gave everything and expected nothing
Except Niota .
We parted our ways when we were thrown in the streets.
I kept the cup and you took the rest.
Last time I saw you, you were trying to talk to strangers about our little Niota.
If you are looking for me, you will find me at the corner of North Killingsworth sitting there at the entrance of the freeway.
Asking if you have seen my Niota.


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