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  • When I got home from work, I stood in the backyard and I looked up at the sky. I took a few photos and marveled at the gorgeous colours, even in winter. The sky such a vibrant shade of blue-gray. The barren trees reaching up, branches spread wide, like fingers, as if to touch the sky.
    And me, standing alone, smaller than anything else except the forgotten patio furniture, wondering what any of it means.
    I thought of you, then, and what it would feel like if you were in the house, waiting for me. I imagined walking in the front door and finding you there, in the living room, watching a movie, or upstairs taking a shower after a long day at work. Or maybe you wouldn't be home yet. So I imagined, then, changing out of my work clothes into something more comfortable, and making you dinner. And what would I make? I've imagined these moments so many times: I would make you a roast, with dijon-rosemary-white wine sauce; and roasted potatoes; and steamed asparagus with toasted almonds. I would set the table, and open a bottle of wine, and wait for you. My favourite fantasy has you walking in the door and coming into the kitchen, putting your arms around me and kissing my neck.
    "Hello, beautiful" you say.
    "Hi, darling", I answer, turning around to kiss you. Your lips melt into mine and there is nothing else in this moment except our breath.
    When we pull away, I look at you and say, "You are my favourite person in the world, and I will always love you, just the way you are."

    The wind tugged gently on my coat sleeve, caressing my cheek, bringing me back to reality. It was 5:30 and the sun had already set, the sky a darker shade of slate gray than it was ten minutes before. One good thing about snow, it reflects the twilight and makes everything look brighter than it really is. I took a deep breath.

    You were not in the house, waiting for me. And you were not about to come home from work, either.

    You are not here. You will not be here. There are miles, and miles between us, and so much space, filled with the words I do not say. You know, I suspect, more than you let on. But you keep quiet too, and I swallow my words, and I vow to tell you next time. When the time comes, I know that I will lose my courage, or you will laugh, and so I second-guess myself. I'm afraid that you will never really understand how much I love you.
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