Paul Auster

I miss you. I don’t miss you. I miss you. I really
don’t care if you care, I don’t miss you. Your
head is Muir and full of devil-may-care girls, with
fluff for hair, and who smell like you’re shielding
them from war, and the Cape Corps, and you don’t
need me like I need you, and you don’t love me
like I love you, and I’m so full of it, so full of myself, of the knowledge
of superego, and manic depression, and I hear
and see hallucinations. There I said it. There I
said it, and there’s another reason for you to hate
me, to never love me, to never leave her for me.
All I can think of is my grandfather, and all I can
think of is his bicycle, and his brother who committed
suicide, and his wife, and all his children whom I
love, whom I hate, who are estranged from me, and
the cousins who hate to love me, who love to
hate me, whom I worship in return. Come back, Oupa, Ouma,
George Botha, Moses Molelekwa, Kevin Carter,
      but you’re dead to me, but not to another woman,
and I’m having difficulty in guarding my tongue, I
have difficulty in controlling what I think, and what
I say. And the whole earth is filled with your glory,
my paternal grandfather, and you’re set adrift, and
I won’t rest until your story is told on your terms.
And my love, what does it matter that I can’t have
the man that matters to me the most in the world, that
he matters to just about every other single female.
I love you; I love you; I love you, but you don’t
love me, adore me, or worship, or praise me but
these words are enough. These words are enough,
and today I thought about the hallucinations, and
the flowers and the fact that you did not want to help me,
instead you hurt me, but it was on my terms, and
these words are on my downtrodden region, and
my terms are my terms. Love, love, love, my love.
If you can’t be mine be hers, be hers my love, be hers.

Abigail George is a Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net nominated South African essayist, poet, short story writer, and novelist.

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