My heart pumped hard to the drum of their march. When they stuttered, my breath staggered. A symphony of blasts layered over the disorganizing rhythm. Short, piercing pops echoed through the agonizing screams to form the harrowing melody. I fell face-first as the song’s now erratic beat quietened.
Our leader bellowed their plans through the television. I heard campaign promises being defied. My rights? Reduced. I can no longer choose my life’s direction.
Our nation was divided. The cracks that had appeared long ago in our culture had now split our country in two.
I took to the internet. I expressed my concerns and shared my opinions with others. I heard perspectives I hadn’t imagined. We processed possible ramifications.
The movement of disillusionment grew. Vocal. Outspoken. We needed our leaders to hear us.
As one, we marched. Our speeches ratified our concerns.
We persisted until they heard us.
For 133 days, you were missing. For months, my mind circulated the questions of ‘what if,’ ‘how,’ and ‘why.’ I blame myself for what happened; I think I always will. After all, it was me that wanted to go to the Halloween party, despite the snowstorm.
It had been a beautiful night. We were tipsy, we danced, and laughter laced the buoyant room. You were tired, and I wanted to stay. That kiss you gave me before you walked the few blocks home alone haunts me. An hour later, I returned to an empty house. Frantically, I tried to locate you. I called your friends. Your family. The police.
The truth became apparent with time. You’d vanished. We all searched through the storm, and during the next. My hopes had to change from rescue to recovery as acceptance filled me. People gave up one by one, until there was just me, hunting alone.
The winter finally began to recede. With it, the snow and ice that had covered the town did too. That’s when your body came into view. I wept, knowing how easily I could have prevented this.
It’s March, now, my love. It’s time for you to rest.