it's not you, it's me.

It is hard to let go of the things we have once thought of as our own.
To see what used to be ours become just like any other,
- any other thing.
We wear some places like badges to remind us of who we are.
I swear some days I still feel you clinging to my skin.
Life lends itself too easily to comparison.
Perhaps we cannot understand what's in front of us unless we first decide what it is not
Whatever it is, it's not like that other thing.
Nostalgia is the supreme art of never allowing anything to compare to that other thing.
But comparing means asking the wrong questions, 
it means stripping everything of its own meaning, disqualifying its essence, defiantly
saying it's worth nothing except its relation to something else.
I did love you for your own sake.
I let your inner turmoil, your brittle charm and your bohemian stubbornness wash over me.
And you let me quietly adore you, you led me on without ever asking me to renounce anything.
Maybe because you didn't really need me to acknowledge you, for anyone to acknowledge you.
You've survived centuries of invasion- who am I to claim you?
This is not goodbye, 
I am releasing you because I want to honor you for what you are. 
Not a possession of mine, not conditioned by something else.
The truth is, I'm trying to win over another city now.
You are generous, eclectic and complex; a whirlwind of sentiments- I'm hoping you will approve. 
If I succeed, you should know it won't take away anything from what we have. 
My feelings for you remain the same. And never in relation to this other thing.

{paralyzing parenthesis}

We brush against each other's cheeks like two strangers in the street
You could be anyone, an old acquaintance, a soon-to-be-lover, 
a tourist without a sense of personal space.
Me, I could be in a hurry to get places.
I should be getting places...
For a little while I think about lingering there, inhaling you and tucking the scent away somewhere, safely.
It takes only a second to realize I have nowhere to put you, 
and there's nothing safe about you or your scent.
How good it would feel to just crackle, lose my brave face; exhale until I'm back at the beginning.
It could be so easy.
But this isn't easy.
It's impossible, you say, from your vantage point of clarity.
So I compose myself, wash my hands, fix those loose strands of hair that might betray me et voilà.
I walk out of here and just keep going. Smiling, giving Mona-Lisa a run for her money.
If only she knew.

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