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Elaine Ching

Volume 4 Issue 2

January 16, 2024


Image provided by Elaine Ching

Everyone knows.  

I was at my friend’s house yesterday and they asked about you.  

Didn’t even say a word, they just knew.  

Maybe I didn’t have to say a word.  

Have you invaded my life that much?  


Even my phone knows. 

I was texting my mom and Autocorrect assumed that I was going to talk about you. 

Didn’t even type in a letter, but it just knew.  

You really take up that much of my phone storage, huh? 

Am I that involved with you that you’ve managed to just “spellcheck” yourself into my life? 


The store seems to know too. 

I was in the most unromantic place, the meat aisle.  

Right by the deli cuts and the raw chicken, doesn’t exactly say “think about your love life” 

But even then.  

The label said they shipped it in from your hometown.  

And suddenly, I was about to break down at Stop and Shop, and not even the fancy part of it.  


My own home manages to bring you up too. 

I was just doing my laundry. 

I guess I just forgot what load I was moving to the dryer.  

And there it was. 

The wet, cold, pile of what used to be white clothes, now stained your favorite color. 


Even my own home appliances seem to agree that I’ve been permanently changed by you even when you’re not here.  

Just when I think you can’t get to me anymore 

When I’m alone. 

When I left my phone upstairs. 

When I make sure there is nothing that is associated with you around me. 

When I have tried every single trick in the book to get rid of you 

When everything is about me, not you 

It’s still about you. 


And sure, I could’ve brushed off their questions, said I didn’t want to talk about it 

Or just hit “undo” to get rid of Autocorrect 

And a town is just a town Somewhere with other people, people who aren’t you, separate from you 

Or maybe a color is just a color, it was just a color before I met you, but now it’s not.  

Now everything I see has some connection to you.  

And I know I hate this, and I complain, and I whine, and I cry, and I say, “I wish I could move on” 

But I don’t think I really mean it. 

Because does everything connect back to you or do I just connect everything back to you?  

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