White Chalk

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I parked somewhere near white chalk in Ocean Beach. The text message said, “Meet me at the pier at 3:30.” I don’t know where I was coming from, but I knew where I was headed. White chalk.

I arrived at the pier, at my feet was an arrow in white chalk. I followed it. A few meters more, white chalk. And a few more, “Meet me at the cafe.” White chalk.

Drunk on white chalk and passion, I walked deeper into the dream. When we acknowledge how pointless our lives are, we’ll go to any lengths to contrive meaning–even if it’s lustful deceit. Even if it means betrayal of what once mattered most. White chalk.

Another arrow. “A little further.” My head spinning a future of white chalk that would never come to pass; creating meaning that was nothing more than a game that only I was playing. White chalk.

I would have turned around, but I was possessed, entranced, and desperate for white chalk. A pace shy of the cafe she stood, eager but patient, waiting for me to look up and smile. We embraced like naive high school lovers who still believe in the happy endings. White chalk.

Reality blurred, perception clouded, by plumes of white chalk as the fiery passion burned hot and burned out.

All that’s left is a sad memory and a smoldering pile of white chalk.

Sometimes we need change so bad that we burn our lives down and start over from scratch. I rebuilt mine out of white chalk.

Two years I’ve been climbing out of this hole. My hands still covered in white chalk.