End of a Chapter


My great aunt used to say

that when things came to an end it was

‘the end of a chapter’


I never heard her say it

she was my great aunt

People don’t really know their great aunts


But I always think about her saying it:

The End of a Chapter


Now that I am nineteen

(which is ancient)

I am starting to learn about chapters


Until recently I didn’t really have many

Nothing ever finished

So everything was one continuous part of my story

One story


Right now

I’m sorting all the books in my room

There are many

But now near the end of my organising

Near the end of the dwindling piles:

keep, chuck, maybe                

Near the end of the day

(in fact, near the end of the night, it approaches 12am)

I consider the chapters closed


All of these chapters

named after my friends

People whose numbers sit in my phone

People whose smiles

and laughs

and funny habits

I can recall with vivid certainty


I have this sentiment welling up inside me

For a chapter already closed

I can’t seem to let it go

I keep re-reading it

Saying the words aloud as though to bring them back to life


A couple years side-by-side

graduation day

a couple weeks together

a couple weeks apart


And then a couple weeks became a couple months

And couples got together and then broke up

And a couple of my friends started looking more like themselves

But less like my friends

And a couple consequences later I was alone


I feel like everyone changed and grew up

Everyone had high school and adjusted accordingly

People learnt how to improve themselves and shit


They are more confident, or more beautiful, or more drunk

They have different clothes, different hobbies


I am just the same?


I wear the same dark lipstick, the same cheap mascara

My clothes are a little more expensive but the same cuts and colours

My sense of humour is of the same, subpar quality

I employ the same tricks of social interaction

I still think most alcoholic drinks taste shit

I still love stars and fire, birds and beaches, festivals and fairy-tales

I am still drawn to people who don’t need me


End of a Chapter

I need to move on, keep reading

Stop putting sticky notes between pages

Stop underlining quotes

Stop making notes

You are okay now, you are free

You have no lingering responsibility


Go outside

Make friends – no one is going to make fun of you anymore

No one will ‘forget’ to invite you

Make fun of how you dress just to spite you

Call you a nerd or a fag or a freak, straight cis trash, they’ll like you


I promise                                                                                    

You are used to being an actor in their play

Now they’re all gone: bam! Gone away


Let them go

Throw out their things

Take your finger out of their book, marking your place

They don’t need it

If they will forget, let them


This is the End of a Chapter


So it is also the Start of a New One