I go to sleep knowing that when I wake up she won’t be there. But during my sleep it will feel so real, like I could reach out and touch her. My fingers would squeeze her shoulder, brush along her warm neck, slip down and over every rounded bone of her spine. The bed would bounce gently as she turns onto her back, turns on to her side, turns to face me. The deepest curve sits above her hip, almost u-shaped by the way she leans on an elbow.
The light is behind her and her face is hidden in darkness. But I know she’s smiling. She always smiled. She smiled differently at me, a telling smile. My smiles were never as fluent so I had to use my words.
‘What’s your favourite word?’
Her hand slides forward across the sheets and a fingernail pokes my shoulder. ‘Mississippi.’
‘But that’s not a word.’
‘It’s a name.’
‘Names aren’t words?’
‘They’re words, but they’re words already given to something by somebody else. I want to know your words.’
‘My words, my words are better as thoughts. Words are misused, misunderstood, misspelled, misleading. But thoughts, they’re capable of things so much greater than words.’
‘What is your thought then?’
‘My thought is that when I wake up you’ll be gone.’