On Being Alone

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Alone is not the same as lonely,
though I might as well be alone
if I will be lonely either way.
Someone told me that once.

I know you don’t understand the foreign
concept of needing alone time
something an overworked mother would say–
let me try to explain:
It’s the quiet in my head. The calm
after the storm. A light contented
relief, to be with myself, to curl into
the couch with a good book that might
hold my attention longer even than
a good friend. Sorry, friends.

It’s just that I listen too much. No–
it’s just that you talk to much. No–
it’s just that my voice is too soft. No–
it’s just that your voice is too loud.

There is no blame. There is only peace
in being alone after we have been together
so long. There is only quiet, in which I may
organize my thoughts, and repeat happy times
in my head over and over again.

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