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  • Every love story is a ghost story.
    --David Foster Wallace

    Can you love a city? The way one loves a man? The curve of these hills. The curve of his spine. How you once traced each vertebrae with the palm of your hands. While your feet. Have they not trampled up 49 hills? His moodiness. Like the fog that comes in the morning. Vanishes. By the afternoon. The romance of secret places. That store on Valencia that sold witchcraft. Santeria candles. When did it vanish? When did your heart? When did it start closing?

    So many ghosts. In a pink Victorian, the opera singer stills sings. Gary is still laughing. His voice booming so much that the gingko trees outside. They are quivering. In the rain. He once walked you home. And the yellow trumpet flowers. They remind you of him. The sweetness of their scent. The ambrosia of his hair. Wet.

    So many tattoos and totems. This taqueria was once a bistro was once a pizzeria was once a noodle shop. A city within a city. That lemon tree. He planted it. Now it bears fruit. The fog. It still comes. The rain. It still falls.

    But you. Gary. I strain to remember your laughter now. Must that too be erased?
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