The phenomenon is known to the Nez Perce as átawit láp’ulp’ul – the ashes of love. The remnant of someone burning like an ember in your subconscious. For a long while I found it comforting. I would lay down at nigh, punishing myself for past transgressions. Like a salve I would brush up against, his voice would come into my head and show me the fallacy. I would imagine us walking in the woods like we always had. A spectator would conclude that I was living in the past. But I was very much living in the present. My present.
About a week ago his voice faded. I can’t say that I reached out to keep it from going. It just felt that he’d naturally probably outstayed his welcome as it was.