A Thousand Splendid Suns
“Only two weeks since he had left, and it was already happening. Time, blunting the edges of those sharp memories. Laila bore down mentally. What had he said? It seemed vital, suddenly, that she know.
Laila closed her eyes. Concentrated.
With the passing of time, she would slowly tire of this exercise. She would find it increasingly exhausting to conjure up, to dust off, to resuscitate once again what was long dead. There would come a day, in fact, years later, when [she] would no longer bewail his loss. Or not as relentlessly; not nearly. There would come a day when the details of his face would begin to slip from memory’s grip, when overhearing a mother on the street call after her child by [his] name would no longer cut her adrift. She would not miss him as she did now, when the ache of his absence was her unremitting companion–like the phantom pain of an amputee.”
It had been months since she had left us, and it was still happening. Overwhelming waves of emotion randomly rushing in all at once followed by the dreary image deeply etched in my mind- I couldn’t keep myself from looking away. I couldn’t bear to say goodbye to her body dressed in white through my mother’s phone screen. White-noise and the amplified sound of my heart pounding in my chest blasted in my ears.
I closed my eyes. Concentrated.
I let the memories of the years before replay and rewind – I held onto the pleasant moments I could conjure up. I yearned to hear her laugh echo in my mind and hear the softness in her voice when she called me her lovely flower. I remembered how her fragile hands delicately twirled her soft locks into braids, and the tender warmth coming from her palms as she rubbed my knees. I kissed those same hands in farewell two summers ago not knowing it would be our last.