Don’t leave the lights on for me.
I will make my own way.
Along this seemingly deserted path.
It is peopled by flowers which know me well.
They recognise my feet;
and have steeled them for this journey.
You may, if you wish; say a prayer, any prayer…
Perhaps you could pray for the old, scented candles –
that they do not burn out or their scents fade,
before opportunities subside.
Thankfully, destiny is never carved in stone, predetermined.
It meanders like a stubborn river.
Sometimes, it stands still but it is fluent, fluid.
Like untethered cobblestones intersecting along life’s least-trodden tracks
or spread like pollen across unknown unfurled fields of time.
So, all is not lost. No apologies, necessary.
This is not some ill-fated expedition into the bosoms of nostalgia or the arms of regrets.
This is no Sayonara Swan song, carried away in carts of fear along tomorrow’s narrowing tunnels. They have been exorcised.
I won’t need a torch.
I know that even the thickest fog burns off, eventually.
And that tired, aching feet recover.
They grow steadier, more determined, and more resilient.
Thus, you needn’t wait for me by the window, dressed in sympathy or sadness.
You needn’t feel compelled to accompany this path.
Neither must you feel obliged to stand by and cheer or even wave goodbye.
For the stirring leaves and the wind’s murmurs are my friends.
That bold sun kissing the air, and the birds flirting with the skies, too,
are all abiding companions.
They know this road by heart.
And their melodies swing from branch to branch like fireflies to light the way.
I won’t fool myself with dreams; expect welcome parties of nostalgic homecomings;
séances of kumbayas to recount lost special moments;
or even hope for smiles exchanged up close or at a distance.
I know now. Certain paths walk themselves. Alone.
Tonight… even if the stars come out.
Close the blinds, one last time.
Lock the windows and doors.
And turn down the bed.
But don’t leave the lights on for me.
I will find my own way… Alone.