I hand you my heart as it hangs from my sleeve

young kids sitting on a ledge
I’ve come to the conclusion that I’m in love with the past
that everything that was supposed to be, just couldn’t last
I tell you that my heart is cold and my soul is numb
and that what we once had, well, was just me being dumb

couple riding piggy back

I try to tell you things that I don’t really believe
As I hand you my heart, as it hangs from my sleeve
I continue to rant about my love for the past
and the way it all rushed by far too fast

couple sitting together

I was in love with THAT time of life not really you
I don’t want to be cruel but then maybe I do
For there were times yourself, when you weren’t very nice
and you came back to hurt me not just once but now twice!
So I’ve come back to hurt you first, here instead
And ask you nicely to get the hell OUT of my head!

Keri London 2015 ©

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To Not Know Where You Went…

Some days I can wake up and…

you won’t be the first thing on my mind

crying girll 

But slowly, as my day begins,

you are there as my heart rewinds

peeking through the front door

I still can’t go a whole day,

but now I can go several hours,

without my heart feeling  as if it’s been

scraped upon the ground

sad woman2

I don’t look for you as I once did,

But I don’t need to, you’re always there

lonely window

Though I don’t wander through your life anymore

It’s not because I don’t care.

I just had to find my way back to my life now

to find a way to let go somehow….

phone message2

Sometimes it’s harder to catch my breath

as your memory fills my head like a scent

And other times it is like a relief

just to not know where you went.

Keri…

 letting go poem2

Can I Call You?

computer instant message

 

One late night when Keri was up in her study working on her book, she heard an Instant Message notification and switched her screen to the Internet and saw Jack’s name and an invitation to chat. Keri thought for a minute. Face book messages and emails seemed harmless but there was something so much more personal about Instant Messages, it was almost like a phone call. Keri leaned her head in her hands and then looked up again and without really thinking it through typed back “Hi”

computer man at night

At first the conversation was formal and then slowly they started a back and forth banter asking each other a lot of do you remembers. And then Jack talked about his work and shared that he attributed all of his success for the foot in the door her father had given him all those years ago. He said he’d never even known about computers and how they were his life now. He shared how successful he was and Keri’s heart felt a tug and typed back; “He would be so proud of you.” And Jack shared about how he called when her father died and Keri typed back “Really?” I never knew!!” Jack replied, “Yeah you were married by then, and your mom answered the phone and was pretty distraught and the conversation was just short and sweet. But I got the message.” Keri sat there as her mind re-winded. So many emotions filled her at that moment. And then Keri typed. “I’ve always felt guilty about your mom.” Jack shot back, “Why?!” Keri shared how she always felt that he’d felt that she’d caused him not to go and save her, that if he went sooner, he would have found her in time. “Oh baby, he typed, I never felt that way! Years later my dad shared with me in a counseling session that mom attempted suicide seventeen times!” Keri felt a flood of emotions and a rush of relief. It was almost as if a physical weight lifted. Tears filled her eyes. She’d carried this burden for all of these years and she could finally let it go.

phone message2

Jack typed. “Can I call you?” Keri froze. And typed back. “Jack, what are we doing?” But then typed in her phone number. And then her phone rang. “Hi” Keri answered. “Hi” Jack said in a rich male voice that gave her a funny feeling. “You sound so different but the same!” Keri said. “You sound exactly the same.” He replied warmly. “I was never going to give you my phone number she said.” He smiled and said “I already had it. You forgot to erase one of your signatures in the very beginning of one of our letters to each other but then you started erasing them so I figured you’d forgotten to erase the one I saw.” She felt her face grow red. “Well yeah, I guess I needed to trust that you weren’t going to do something crazy.” He laughed.

Soon they began texting and he began calling her regularly. She never called him nor initiated any of the texts at first but she’d answer and somehow convinced herself that she was just answering him and doing anything wrong. But she knew that she was stretching boundary lines and it had all become addicting. She’d been caught off guard for this need for the attention he was giving her. Though, she knew that it would take only one more step to fall down the rabbit hole and she was holding on for dear life.

************************

To be continued….

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Just Kids”

Dear Jack,                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Wow. What a blast from the past. I am literally sitting here in disbelief that it is really you. I went on a search site years ago, (probably the one that you mentioned) and goggled a bunch of names. Yours was among them. I am sure. I’ve also wondered about you, I mean even if you were still alive. By the way, there is nothing to forgive; we were just kids back then.

Keri

And she clicked SEND. And immediately felt a sick feeling.

mouse

 

 

 

Why did I say that?! Keri berated herself. All of these years, she wanted the chance to really talk to Jack and tell him how much he hurt her and now she had the chance and relinquished it.

frustrated on computer

 

Keri let out a loud sigh and padded down the stairs to refill her coffee cup. She poured herself another cup and let the aroma envelope her. As she looked out at the gray day. It was spring and everything was green. She watched as a school bus drove by and remembered the mornings of rushing Brynne off to school and felt a familiar twinge pulling at her heart strings and rebuffed it. As she admonished herself to not go there today. She never knew that midlife crisis was really an actual thing or that an empty nest would hurt so much but for a while now, Keri felt stuck. She would not go there today she told herself and then remembered Jack and went up the stairs and found his reply waiting.

Oh my Dearest Keri,

I was so afraid you wouldn’t forgive me. I am not proud of the way I behaved back when we were kids. Or how I treated you. I have learned a lot since those days and hope that I didn’t leave you too damaged and remember the good times as well. I do.

Jack

Keri stared at the screen and noticed how quickly he’d clung to the “just kids” comment. She found it ironic that a few months earlier shortly after Brynne left for school, she began remembering the times in the journal. One morning, when Tim was on another business trip, she was in the shower and the memories came in waves, like flash backs, they hit one after another, as she began to reflect upon her life and those days of abuse she experienced from Jack, she used to believe that most of the times had been emotional and never really allowed herself to focus on the physical part of the abuse. But for some reason that morning it hit her and she collapsed crying in the shower thinking aloud. “You hurt me; you really, really hurt me!” As she recalled the physical part of the pain she cried, whispering in sobs over and over again “You hurt me.”

shower crying

 

The pain was still raw and so she wrote about it. Now, as she remembered that post she realized that on her face book page she shared links to her blog and wondered if when he’d been on her page looking at her pictures, he also might have seen the link to her blog. She frowned and considered everything, asking herself if she even cared. He knew it happened, what could he say? But she did care and panicked a little and it all felt a little too familiar and she said to herself; “Get a grip Keri, you don’t have to ever walk on eggshells again!”

The House on Country Road

forties porch

 The house on Country Road is empty now
The shadows hesitate as the memories linger

Liz
No love is lost as my heart goes back
listening for the melody of the singer

forties shadows dooe

The scent of lives once lived inside the walls
stays upon my skin like notes inside my head

forties smoking

So strange the way life once so alive,
is the part inside of me that is now most dead.

Keri London

1977

#32 The letters

old letters

 

 

Dear Journal,

Settling into our little house has been such fun. Though when we first rented the place we’d discussed possibly talking to our landlord about maybe leasing it with an option to buy. But Jack has since discovered that there is something not right about the foundation. Either it doesn’t have one all together or there’s something really wrong with it. All that I know is that when I serve our soup, it leans to one side! But it’s okay. We just laugh about it. Though Jack says he wouldn’t be laughing if we’d bought the place. But I do love it!

eating soup

There are these lovely built in dressers in each of the two bedrooms and in our bedroom, which must have been meant to be the masterbedroom it is  much more elaborately made, built right beneath the two windows facing the front of the house. It has two little cubby drawers on top of each side of the dresser that are darling. And as I was papering the drawers with liners I pulled them all the way out to make it easier to measure and  and I discovered these amazing letters tied up with a stained old pink satin ribbon.

letters tied with a pink ribbon

The post mark says that they were written in 1941 to 1944 and then they just abruptly stopped. It sounds as if they were from an older man and woman who’d been each other’s first loves and then bumped into each other years later. I can imagine them in my head and they have sent pictures back and forth but for the most part they are very discreet. From what I have gathered in what I have read so far, they both were married and raised families. It sounds as if he is free. His wife may have died. I am not sure yet. Maybe some of the later letters will say. But she sounds to still be married and not very happily. She sounds so sad and yet happy to have found him again.

 

forties pic hugging

 

I’ve been reading them to Jack and he thinks it is cute the way that I can’t help but cry when I read them, they just are so sad.  I made him promise that would never happen to us and that we would never end up like that and just lose touch. I cried when I made him promise. It was weird. I’d never felt that feeling of panick before and the crying just wasn’t tears. It was the sobbing, the I can’t catch my breath till I get a headache kind of crying. Jack was really sweet and just kept promising and rubbing my back and pushing back my hair from my face and telling me he promised. I have become very invested in their story and think about them a lot and wonder whatever happened. He never wrote a return address on the outside of his envelopes. I only have his letters to her and so I have to just guess what she might have said to him first. Though in the end of 1944 there are a few unmailed letters that she wrote.  They started…”My dearest C”  and all of “Cs” letters were addressed to Annie Madison at this VERY address! He’d start each letter… To my sweet little Annie and end each one, Love Always, C. I can’t help but wonder why she never sent those last letters.

 

WRITER BLACK AND WHITE

 

At first the letters sounded formal and happy to have found each other. C was on a business trip and Annie had just finished lunch with friends. They hugged because they talked about that hug a lot in later letters. And exchanged addresses. And then the letters began. There are 83 in all and I am only through 34 of them. Now as I read more, they are much less formal and beginning to sound like they have always loved each other. They have begun to stroll down memory lane and it is fun to follow them through memories of their first dates and kisses and I am trying to keep them all in order.

letters

 

I know that I could have sat down and read them all in one sitting but I wanted to make it a special thing between Jack and me. I like to wait until he is there so that I can read them to him too. He listens sweetly and tells me to wait for him before I read ahead though I’m not really sure he cares like I do. Though he does make a big point to tell me to wait for him. Probably because he knows that  I am so wound up inside about lost loves by the time I finish each letter that it makes me not want to take ours  for granted. Though I already told you that I jumped way ahead and read Annie’s last few letters and I’m not sorry that I did. It made me understand it all better and made me feel this weird connection with her.

reading letterssss