i wanted to bring you flowers - lift the scent of jasmine out of the air or carry the wind with me - to where you were hiding, under the sleep-strained sheets and the empty bottles - to before pills and drink and men could destroy you. but you won't answer the phone or the door or the possibility of things being different - because, you say, there is no hope - inside these dark hours - these endless moments of grief - this constant feeling of loss. i say i have been there - have run full bore into the darkness myself - trying to get there before it could come get me. how i have buried myself also - under the impenetrable longing and the shame - and the elusive promise of forgetting. you still think i couldn't possibly understand, that no one can possibly understand. but we do. So many of us truly do. i once held the hand of a beautiful woman while she pushed a baby out of her body into the world. Two years later, I held that baby while we buried her beautiful mother into the earth. She'd been found dead - kicked to death in a crack house just outside of town. She was one of us - someone with dreams and fears and love and concern - a lifetime of new beginnings and loss. And it started with just one little pill. When i call you - which i will do - again and again and again until you answer, because i recognize that you are ill and not just a pain in the ass - i will say come outside and smell the wind, watch the morning unfurl with me - she how it just opens up quietly into the darkness instead of against it - until all signs of night are simply gone. and look how we are standing here alone - just you and me - and also a million other people inside their houses and their cars under their bridges and in alleys and parks. All of us watching the light open up - wondering how we will do it. what we will choose - while there is still a choice to be made.