lipstick and cigarettes


I was listening to Waylon Jennings and remembered I left my favorite lipstick at his house.

When I pulled up to his house, he was sitting on the porch smoking a cigarette. I could tell he hadn’t slept in days.

“You’re not a smoker,” I said.

He stared at me and shrugged his shoulders.

“I bought a pack when you told me you needed space.”

Two weeks ago.

His neighbors were outside drinking cheap beer talking about video games.

After the uncomfortable silence, we walked inside his apartment. His bright red couch was staring at me cold and firm.

“I was going to throw it away,” he said.

I had to remember where I was. “Huh?”

“Your lipstick.” Flat. Stern. Heartbroken.

I felt my hand do that thing. I reached for the side of my head and combed my hair through my fingers.

“I’m glad you didn’t,” I said. “It’s my favorite color. They don’t make it anymore.”

He walked upstairs to get my lipstick. I waited in the apartment where I had recently broken up with someone for the first time in 27 years.

Everything dies baby that’s a fact
But maybe everything that dies someday
Comes back

I always listen to Springsteen’s Nebraska when I’m feeling restless, or when I want to get stoned and lie on my living room floor.

God I love the sound of the harmonica. It sounds how love must feel.

He would never take his shirt off when we were in bed. It took me almost a year to tell him how I feel. That we had no future together.

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