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What We Mean When We Say Amicable.

I don’t regret it which, I guess, is the unrefined gold. I don’t regret it because he was good to me, because for a time we were so happy, we would giggle in the middle of the day and drink each other in till we were full to bursting, unabashed and grateful for the grace of having found each other. I don’t regret it because I get to carry the scent of him in a corked and slender vial, on the near-empty shelf of recollection I reserve solely for the things I wish to revisit.

Not regretting it is the parting gift I’ll give him. Because I know he doesn’t mean to leave me; he only means to leave. We should need ourselves slightly more than the ones we love. And when we feel ourselves fraying in ways no one else can restitch, it is wrong to stick around long enough to resent our significants for not being seamstresses. 

And aside, toward the end I saw it coming. I suppose that’s the parting gift he gave me, a gentle tearing away that felt like a slow unspooling, suggesting, soon, he would ask me to let go of the long end I was holding while there was still such generous slack and nary a hint of tension.


slb is a writer and professor in Baltimore, MD.

2 thoughts on “What We Mean When We Say Amicable.

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