I'm in a weird sort of stasis right now, not sure what to do with myself, but feeling that I should be working. I am so used to talking to Raven throughout the day, though, that I am going to go write in a coffeeshop this afternoon, rather than keep listening for his chirp.

I record the notes of my grief: my eyes feeling as though filled with hot sand, the tired and lonely ache inside my heart, the way my throat hardens,  my vision blurring more at the bottom than the top when tears well. The wet tremble as they linger on my cheeks. It's the only thing I can think to do.

I have lost the only heart in the world that loved me utterly and unbegrudgingly and without reservation, the way only an animal or child can love, for almost two decades. That came running when I called him, because he knew I loved him unconditionally as well.

I will never be done with this sorrow. It will fade, but right now it is so fresh. The feel of him on my lap as we slept together on the couch the last two nights. The way he still paid attention to the sound of my voice in those last few hours, as I read him poetry and we sat together waiting for the vet to come. The final moments of the sedative and injection and handing his limp body over to them,  convinced he was still lingering, still there, still alive, but knowing just as well that he was not.

And is not, and is no longer, but will always be mine.