She knows you

She knows you are out beyond her windows. She is keeping things for you. Things do not move. These are things that you left. You cannot recall them. She is putting her hands on things in her apartment to see if they will move. You left things in an apartment. When she pulls the entire curtain of blinds aside with her whole face the window reflects back into the apartment, across the yellow marbled kitchen table where stacks of folded napkins recede to the wings of a golden armchair over which is draped a beige coat and a towel that has dried in its draped over folds, a pulled wispy bunch of cotton, a hand on the door frame, translucent plastic bags folded into squares, sewing notions, a set of keys on a lanyard, and an apron. The reflections do not appear on the outside of the glass. Objects are not mnemonic vessels. Between you and her a mug of tea is still. She wants you to take it. She wants an empty apartment. If nothing moves she will need to leave until you find your way back, when, of an afternoon you are able to see from the street a lamp on in the window, when the sky is swollen and opaque with clouds, dark enough for the lamp to warm the curtain and glass heavy with condensation. That afternoon you stood on the sidewalk with your arms crossed and watched her window and seeing what her face must have looked like you craned upward to expose your throat to the fog. When she held the warm mug out to you you refused to take it. The cluttered apartment is a burden. Each thing she has collected, each the sole purpose of her existence for just a moment, is another thing she has to lose. She cannot abandon the things she has forgotten. They are strewn throughout the city, each icon of guilt, slowly replacing her with the worthless seconds of her intentions to construct a trail of life. She wants you to relieve her of them. When you touch the doorknob and feel it in your hand she feels her hand annihilate the doorknob. When you draw mint steam into your lungs she does not and never has. The guilt of an historical life is no longer hers.

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