We have lost people to distance. A part of us gets up, packs up its bags and leaves. However sweet the goodbye. Or brief the quota of time we had with them. It’s still as though something is broken. It can’t be fixed, no matter how hard we try. We may know that things will be better soon. And we may move on quicker than what we think is possible. It doesn’t mean that we can forget the sound of it.
Whenever someone important to me disappears from my life, I hear the passing of a distant train from a bygone era. Even if they are taking the bus, going to the airport or walking down the road, the squealing of an old steam horn beseeches me. And I feel safe and warm.
The chugging melody of its wheels, turning on rusty tracks. The chattering of faceless people as smoke billows over the mouth of some tunnel. The muffled screeching of its breaks while nearing a busy station.
A cacophony of noises pierces me before ghosting the wind.
If only there is a way to capture the moment and store the best parts of it in some library. I can visit them every time I need help in dealing with loss or longing.
“Nothing at all, in my head, to say to you. Only the beat of the train I’m on”
It has been two years since I rode the train. But I can sense its rhythm in my body whenever I want to. I can also internalize the prickly ache of losing people at will.
It’s not something I can be proud of. Not some superpower I can triumphantly wield to save myself, much less anyone else.
I am just addicted to remembering how it feels. The sound of departure. My beautiful train song.
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