Hours After You, Redux

Tomorrow, something new. But for today, this. It’s not new. It’s Hours After You. It’s a few years old, but it’s on my mind:

Dream hard, rage hard.

4 thoughts on “Hours After You, Redux

  1. I love how you don’t know until the final paragraphs that this is the narrator’s letter. It’s a short epistolary story (as opposed to an epistolary novel).

    My sense is that the narrator does not trust their own memory, that perhaps they are mentally ill. The allusions to fairies and fog and shadow and the light between the trees reinforces a notion in my mind that perhaps this lost love has arguably EITHER died, abandoned the narrator, or has never existed except in a haunted state of desire and longing. The ambiguity and fairy tale associations here provide a deeper sense of loss, and pushes your story into mystical territory. I like that!

    My favorite part, however, is the act of nailing the letter to the tree, and then following the elusive shadow love into the forest.

    1. I read the story twice before commenting, but I can’t decide whether the letter writer actually does follow the estranged love into the forest, or whether they even post the letter.

      “More sensible, more like me.” in the earlier parts suggests dissolution and hallucination. The narrator does not trust their own words.

      Anyway, this story made me want to revisit a poem about trees and fairy tales. Written five years ago, I have never posted it, in part because I don’t think it’s strong. Anyway, I was glad to read your words today.

      1. I just read this story again, it’s been a while. It’s been on my mind for some strange reason, not because I exactly remember what it’s about, but because of how it made me feel to write it.

        I think it’s real, in my view. She’s damaged by someone who’s left her, and she’s abusing herself and letting others abuse her in the aftermath of it. The person is gone, and not coming back, but she’s clinging to a dark hope. Totally knowing it’s not to be, and going into that forest at the end, in the off chance that person is in there. But they won’t be.

    2. I think it is exactly the narrator’s letter, you’re right.

      I’ve had shadow loves. I’m sure many of us have. They’re gone now. Just not totally forgotten.

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