He asks me about you while I’m chewing a celery stalk. I shrug a little. I say I’m happy that you’re happy. My voice doesn’t shake. I sound professional and adult, like I peeled off all the parts of me that cling to you. He asks if I’m over you and I chew until my jaw hurts and I say, yeah, I think so. It doesn’t sound like a lie, even to me. It sounds like someone is shouting those words from the other end of a tunnel, like I’m not living in my throat anymore. He asks if I ever think about you. I say, well it’s hard not to when other people ask questions, ha ha. He doesn’t find that funny. I swim in the silence left over and then I catch the answer at the bottom of the pool like when I was seven and plucking river stones from murk. I say, I don’t unless something reminds me. It sounds diplomatic. Appropriate. I try to calculate the amount a normal person would think about you, dividing how much time we spent together by how much we are spending apart. In the new world, you’re not supposed to love deep, it’s creepy and offensive. People are supposed to fold in and out of your life like leaves; you’re never supposed to love hard enough that you get road rash from falling. Love doesn’t look good on Facebook, I mean. You took plenty of Instagram pictures carefully excluding me. I guess it was so when you went there would be no evidence. Nothing to delete.
He tucks his feet up. He asks how much I’m reminded of you. I blocked you on everything only to unblock you while I was drunk. I scrolled page after page thinking about how much the Internet killed love. Time was that if you were done with someone, you were done for good. The only way you could rip the wound open was by following them across countries. Snail mail doesn’t burn like seeing you happy, dancing with other girls. I’m saying the world was a worse place to be but I wouldn’t think of you as much, maybe. I say to him, ever think about how the 1950’s are super racist and sexist but people still fall for the aesthetic? He asks me what that has to do with the conversation. You would have got it. Some stuff is only pretty until you open it, like how pears go rotten once they touch air. I feel like that a lot, like my core holds onto little black seeds. And he asks me what I’m talking about. I say, oh, nothing.