The Wish



so i made a wish. and i wished this thing with
all my heart, with all my soul, with all my being. i wished 
for it as hard as i've ever wished for anything in my life. 
harder, maybe, because the stakes are so much higher now 
than for anything else in my life so far.

i stood in the hall just a heartbeat away from the place 
where i could see the front door. i stood there trembling, 
wishing this thing. i couldn't move from the spot i was 
standing, couldn't breathe, hardly, and i wished for time 
to flow backwards. i wished that i would move forward and 
you would be standing at my front door, standing and waiting 
for me to let you in. had you been outside, i'd have opened 
that door, taken you into my arms and held you so tight, you
wouldn't have been able to breathe.

we were mostly good together here in my apartment. we were 
as good as any two people in love can be good together. we 
were strong and so deeply in love, nothing could tear us apart 
from each other. when you were here the world made sense again,
nothing could hurt me, nothing could go wrong. here in this place 
we could have lived out the rest of our lives together, grown old 
and much grayer. we could have weathered any storm, faced any 
problem and solved it. here. because you were a different man here, 
Glenn. you were decent and loving and wise.  here.  when you
were here, there was nothing the two of us couldn't have worked 
out. your addiction, my psychopathology...nothing.

but you couldn't stay here with me. you had to return to that filthy, 
smelly house where everything was wrong all the time, where you 
could indulge and nurture your rage and set it loose on the people 
who loved you the most, though you deserved it the least.

sometimes i sit and i try to understand why that was. why it was 
that you couldn't stay here with me and been the man you were 
when you were here. sometimes i think about it, cry about it, 
pray about it. i drive myself to the brink of insanity thinking about it, 
trying to find the one moment in that time when i could have changed 
the courses of our lives. of course i know i couldn't change it now. now 
it's over and done and the consequences are being paid. but still, i 
think about it--how it could have been with us.

i stepped back away from that spot, turned around, went back into 
my bedroom and had myself a good, long cry. i cried for the people 
we almost became--me stable and strong, you drug-free and working 
on your rage. me working and in control of myself, you healed and 

i know and understand all the reasons you loathe and despise me 
now, but i sense that you will never understand the reasons i did 
what i had to do. you will forever deny how hard it was for me to 
do that very last thing that changed the entire shape of our lives. 
you will go to your grave believing the worst of me, and maybe i 
deserve that, maybe i don't, but it will forever be a fact that i
tried every single possible other thing to not having to do that. 
i told myself a long, long time ago, decades before i ever met you, 
that i would never get on my knees and beg a man for anything, and
i kept that promise i made to myself for over 30 years. but to get 
through to you, i did that thing i swore i would never do. i did it for 
krystal. i did it for you. i did it for me, for us. it didn't change a damn 

tonight if you had come to my door, i'd have opened it, 
as i said, and i'd have made love to you until dawn.

i'm so glad you didn't show up.


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