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One morning, the poet woke up to find that her life had walked out on her. Every room in the little apartment was a void of empty whiteness. The only way that a person could even tell that there had recently been pictures on the wall were by the smoke stains neatly ringing where the frames once hung. Being a poet she had smoked almost two packs a day for the past three years, something that her life had always hated. Now she looked up at the blank wall above her kitchen table and saw only the dingy outline of her sister's senior photo and her mother's 50th birthday with big white rectangles where their faces should have been.

She wanted to call the cops, but the phones were gone. She decided that she would drive to the police station until she realized that both her keys and her car were gone, too. A cab was her next option, but her purse was nowhere to be found. She went banging on her neighbor's doors, pleading for them to let her use their phones, but no one answered. Finally, in a fury of despair, she just sat down on the crème-colored carpet of her living room floor and cried. It was only then that she saw the note leaned up against the floorboard.

"Good morning," it read in impeccable script, "By now you must have noticed my absence. I am truly sorry, but I couldn't take it any more. You've neglected my virtues for too long, and I finally just had to leave you. Don't come looking for me. You won't find me. I wish you the best of luck in whatever you decide to do. Always, Your Life"

The poet read and re-read the note in utter disbelief. This was unheard of. It couldn't be true. But as she gazed up at the ceiling of her vacant little apartment, she knew there was no other explanation. As soon as she came to this conclusion, despair overtook her completely and she started to sob, spasmodically. Her wails echoed out the window, down the desolate alley and then got lost in the street. She cried for hours while sitting limply on her floor. Without tissues, however, her tears just fell in big blotches onto her shirt and her nose ran with nothing to stop it.

As night fell and the crickets outside of her window began their rhythmic calls, the poet's tears suddenly stopped. She wanted to cry more, but nothing would come out. This only made her more depressed since she no longer had even her tears to comfort her. Without her tears to occupy her, she realized that she was damp, cold and quite thirsty, since she had cried all of her moisture away. Dehydration had made her brain rather foggy, so she padded into her kitchen, forgetting that there would be no glasses in the cupboards. Yet, not only was she without glasses, but when she tried to turn on the tap nothing came out.

What a bastard, she thought, it even took my water.

Glad that her life had also taken every mirror in the house, the swollen eyed poet left her apartment in her soggy pajamas in search of a bottle of water. It didn't matter that she was cold, without shoes and had no money. She no longer cared. At that moment, all that mattered was that she was thirsty.

Several cars beeped at her as she walked along the street, but she ignored them. Not even the biting wind could bother her, so finally it gave up and left to find an easier target. The lights of the cars blended into the lights of the city and before she knew it, the poet found herself outside of a 7-11. She ambled numbly in, ignoring the strange looks of the attendant.

The cooler containing 16 rows and 12 different brands of bottled water was at the back of the store, right next to the beer. The poet quickly took the largest bottle available, opened it and began guzzling it like a pro. It felt so good it gave her goose bumps. Nothing else mattered at that moment except for the sweet, cool taste of the water she was drinking. Nothing. Not that her life had dumped her, not that her apartment and cupboards and fridge were completely empty, not even that she didn't know how the hell she was going to get out of paying for the bottle of water she was downing.

In that moment, all else disappeared.

In that moment, she was only a lonely, sad poet with no life and no friends.

In that moment, she was whole.



'A word after a word after a word is power.' 

-Margaret Atwood

The English language was the only instrument I was ever meant to play in this life. Stories and poems are a way of letting the air into rooms that have long been left unvisited. Whatever may have brought you here today, I hope the journey resonates with you.

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