Lipstick stains on my coffee mug.
Long strains of hair threaded into the carpet.
Cigarette smoke lingers in the air like an afterthought.
She spoke through shades of mascara.
Language covered her body,
encasing it like a womb, or a blanket.
She would seek shelter in what we could only say,
defining our days by the words that we chose.
I wrote this after I noticed an irremovable lipstick stain on one of my favorite coffee mugs. Odd that I had never noticed it before. I am interested in the things left behind by people close to us. These traces, shadows, ghosts… no matter how small, for some reason, are brought forth into our lives after going unnoticed for an extended period of time.
And then there are the things that we cannot see—memories, images, voices—that are so unique and distinct to one person that they can never be replaced. And these things are stained, like dark red lipstick on the surface of our memory, never to be erased.