More than Ever

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I was feeling more down than usual when I borrowed that book. I must have been, otherwise I probably would have passed it by. But then again I guess I really wasn’t expecting her to leave the way she did, even though it was probably for the best, and I wasn’t hoping for too much anyway, and I was tired of writing depressing poetry. And as a poet, I find I can seek solace in the words of others when my own dwell too much in sadness.

Oh, sorry. You want to know more about the book?

Well, in appearance it wasn’t that special. Something about it seemed interesting though. It—drew me, to say the least. I can't say I'd ever seen it before. It was just sitting on top of a shelf in the Poetry section, and I was somewhat irritated by how dejectedly it seemed to be lying there by itself… Bound in faded leather with flaking gold leaf, it seemed like something that would be more at home at a museum than a library.

It was a pretty good book. Short and sweet, even though it was sad. I don’t quite remember it—not quite minimalist, not quite purple prose, but somehow the tone captured my mood completely and made me feel better. The plot was incredibly, almost ridiculously close to the events that had happened to me recently. The tension, the unknowing, the wondering, the end.

Some others must have borrowed the book as well, since I kept finding notes or the like scribbled into the margins. It didn’t occur to me until later that they all seemed to rhyme with each other. One went:

I miss you more than ever
When I look into the sky.

Most of them were wistful, others were more disheartening. Sort of like:

I love you more than ever
So why did you pass me by?

The book was old enough to still have a little card taped in with a list of people who’d borrowed it, decades and decades ago. I was surprised and intrigued when I saw the name of a poet I’d admired and looked up to, and I think I found the two lines he wrote, they were:

I seek you more than ever
That’s why I tried to fly.

He had committed suicide by jumping off a building.

I thought maybe the book had belonged to him, but it was a little weird because all of the verses were written in different handwriting. But I guess a lot of different people have read this book, because near the end there was the one that went:

I hate you more than ever
I’m so glad I said goodbye.

…and also there was the rather disconcerting one that said:

I love you more than ever
So I had to see you die.

I don’t really remember any others. And like I said, the book was pretty short.

Me? Yes, I did add my own verse. It went something like:

I miss you more than ever
And I still can’t fathom why.

I haven’t been able to write anything since, but I’ve felt amazing. Hardly any negative thoughts or loneliness clouding my mind anymore. Sure, inspiration has been a little slow coming, but at this moment I think I’d prefer the nothingness. It’s peaceful, in a way.

No, I can’t say I remember for sure what the author’s name was. I vaguely recall it being “I. L. Dean” or something strange like that.

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