I've come to realize that my last kiss is no longer memorable, I miss the days of navigating braces, meeting clandestinely in the hall, disapproving administrative looks. I am listening to the hum of the ancient fridge, the occasional fall of ice sheets—here, there are locks on ice boxes, guarding your food from the maid. When you’re rich, you buy walls. When you’re poor, you hold your few possessions and hope. I talk a little more today, a little more in their language, brightly chattering over the shaking of his Parkinson’s hands. I love the mist rolling from the mountain across the bay, the drive home along the shore, my jeans made smaller and my shoes better for a tenth of the price. My best friend is timezones away—I say this is why we do not talk. Somewhere, someone is thinking perhaps she’ll call. Love is sacrifice. Marriage is once. I’ll always write my thoughts on paper, steal your thoughts and write them too. The last time I really cried was to a stranger on Skype, half-explaining in a language I half-speak, the absurdity of a relationship traversed by inches, demarcated by calendar dates. We settled on the word for ‘pushy’; I promptly forgot. My cell phone is an alarm clock, a timekeeper, as much a martinet scoring lines as ever, even sans the umbilical of service. When I wake up I rue the lost hour. Before I go to bed I pack the trunk of the long evening with layers of tasks and puzzles and the business of silence. Right now I am thinking, loneliness is the measure of my accomplishment, the proof of a day well-done. Babies threaten my ego, shake tiny fists at my conviction, ‘what I offer is better than that.’ Today I survived. Made words. Made talk. Survived. Tomorrow will be more. More words, more survival, more bidding back the darkness with a task. Next week will be two cities, four flights, the cautious landing in a busy house. Yesterday was safe. I really want to be marvelous.