Shaken awake by the potholed road, I force my eyes open as the hiss of the night bus lurches and stops. Groggy from the night and the hour from which I wake - only 2 hours away from sunrise. I begin my trek from the terminal. It might not be midnight, but there are plenty of streetlights from here to home.
I don't know how many would get that reference should they read this. They ought to. It's a good song.
I dig into my pocket for my phone and type in the title on the search bar. That guitar strums those first few notes, and I hear your voice, as though you are here to chase the darkness away and keep me safe, keep me smiling.
But oh, you loved the darkness. You were a master of it. You taught me it was nothing to fear, that it could be home to cryptids like us.
I wish it didn't take you away.
The speaker on my phone muffles in my jacket, swinging with each step I take. I hear you rap in the early hours of this cold morning pitch, and I follow the lights to your words. I'm sure there's a reason behind these songs, the way you wrote them. You sing them softly from my pocket. Your music weaves between the shade of trees, bounces off the dusty concrete of these streets, synchronises the electric buzz of the lamps above me, and I still can't answer your question.
'Why the fuck do I write songs?'
That lyric throws me every time. I can hear the missing pieces in it. I wish you asked to borrow mine. I wished I asked if you needed them.
I thank you for at least putting it out there; your words, your questions. I hope we can find an answer soon, buddy.
It might be dark where you are, but I like to imagine you in another reality. Something more upbeat than this one, every ounce of your charisma poured into it. I can see you on a stage, mic to your lips, pumping your fist as the people sing along. The stage lights flare and twirl as the beats kick in and you spit bars no one can match. They love it. They love you as we all did. The smile on your face is there as you introduce a friend to the stage. Out they walk out with their guitar, laying down a sick riff that melts into your words. The air around the two of you alchemises a whole new energy. It ripples over the crowd; a profound knowing that they are in the presence of something right, something big, something secret. They are forever changed. A new faith emerges but no one has to preach about it, they just listen.
We should have listened.
I reach the roundabout at the end of the block, illuminated with a single spotlight. If I turn left and continue walking, I'll forget. Instead I look back at this perfect circle. It's so empty, and it's there for the taking. The sun will be here soon, and I can't help it.
I turn back and leap onto that island, this grand stage, arms outstretched and basking at the centre of these dim streets as my breath puffs into the cold, but all the warmth fills me. The song continues, and I think of you here. What you would say. What you would do. Something deranged, I'm sure, an absolute public nuisance at this ungodly hour, just because we can.
My head tilts up, my breath shakes and tears threaten to spill at the sight of the stars. I know you are among them. Here you are and you are okay. At the very least, you are in this moment. God I miss you.
The song is fading now. Take a bow with me, my friend.
And thank you for walking me home.
About the Creator
Artist | Writer | Lover | Fighter
Born in Sydney, Australia, I write about what inspires me, to inspire others. Poetry, stories, deep introspective works, the lot! MUSE POWERS ACTIVATE!
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