Often, days seem long and my patience starts to wear off.  It’s never like this the days when you are home. I keep myself engaged in chores and leave your thoughts at bay. Attending to them only when they seem restless. Minutes seem like hours  and the hands of the clock are ticking away. Slowly, I drift into thoughts of you again.

I find myself peeking out the window.  Just one last time I say. And the wait prolongs as I see no movement, no progress other than the day speeding away. Through the creeks of the wooden doors, I look for signs. But I only see the entering rays of the sun getting thicker, denser with the hour reminding me that the day is about to end.  And I peer down the street, and then back up the arch and through the dense shrubs for
a letter in the mailbox.

Getting back to work seems difficult due to the my heart’s restlessness. It is a condition that is bound to stay. Today again, the post doesn’t arrive, I know it won’t. It is a week more before the post will come, bringing your whereabouts and my lost smile too. I collect my scattered thoughts just like I collect the clothes you’ve left scattered on the floor. One by one, imagining and feeling your presence in them. I smile to myself as though it is some deep secret that only we share. There is a rush of memories, a nostalgic feeling follows. I leave the pile of your clothes and things on the floor and rush to the bed-side table. I open the drawer which is a collection of letters from you in all these years.

I open one of those letters and stare at curled words just a little longer. The world comes to a halt and time gradually stops. I read while I let each word sink. Myriad emotions take hold of me and I reminisce about us. The words feel like a whisper. And I let it soothe the urge in me. The urge to see you, feel you, hold you. I read them, all of them, again. And that’s what I do each time while you are gone.

Keeping your letters back; I resume work, counting in my mind; the days remaining before I will see you walk home again from the front door. Until then, I wait. I wait for another week for the post to come. And I glance out the door once more while I wait for a letter in the mailbox.

Asha Seth