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‘Love Letter’

My Darling Wife,

If you are reading this it means you survived me. And if you survived me and are reading this it means you know, well, everything. 

Did you guess the password to my computer? Or did Apple let you in, valid proof of death required, I presume? I always meant to clean things up before you had to see the mess, but then I couldn’t stand to deal with the mess, so I guess you are in for it now. I’m sorry I was such a coward, or maybe jerk is the better word, about that. But, of course, now you know that is the least of my faults. I’m sorry, sorry for all of it. 

The porn was not mine. Rick kept sending me links and I kept trying to delete them, but they must have a worm or something because they just will NOT go away. And believe me I tried. I couldn’t even watch them lately, I was so sick, felt so awful. So I don’t know what to do about the hard drive or whatever. It’s a good laptop but might be ruined by the junk that’s on it. I guess you will have to sort that out. I’m sorry for that too.

I never loved anyone but you. That “other woman,” I guess you might call her, was not a person I loved. In fact I came to loathe that “other woman” and even at the beginning she didn’t mean to me what you did, do. She just needed me. She was desperate. She adored me and I couldn’t just leave her alone. YOU were the woman I loved, the only one I loved, I swear. But she was—always there—and that’s why there is an extra bank account under my middle name. It’s meant for her. You don’t have to keep making deposits. Well, of course! But I didn’t leave her anything in the will, as you already know from when we did our wills with Jim. (I didn’t change mine—I would never go behind your back like that!) So whatever is in that account right now is all she’ll ever have. From me. Or, I guess, from you, too. I’m sorry. There is more than enough to go around, and I know you. Oh God, I know you are better than me and you will let her keep that money. Won’t you? We both know you will. 

You might have suspected, but you never let on. Did you know? I wish I could know if you knew and just kept forgiving me. Seven times seventy. That would be like you. Maybe you knew and didn’t even care. I can’t believe that, though! 

One other thing—I bought a house, for her and her kid. Now, don’t jump to conclusions. It isn’t my kid, so there is nothing like that for you to worry about. She thinks he looks like me, but I see no resemblance. At all. Whatever the case, she and he were in a bad way and you and I and our kids had more than enough, so really it was an easy thing to do. It’s paid for, by the way, the house. No mortgage or anything like that hanging around your neck and she pays the taxes, so that’s a done deal, a completed transaction. I didn’t want you to have to worry about that!

Before you trash the computer, if you decide to do that, you might want to look through the photos. There are some great ones of you and the kids. You are beautiful in every one of them. I never stopped thinking you were beautiful. And there aren’t pictures of her or the kid, I am pretty sure, so don’t worry about that! You were what mattered. You might think that sounds flat-out crazy. 

I can’t explain how this all happened. It just kind of unrolled, or built up, or something. You tell me. For real, I wish you could explain it to me. How could I love you like I did, do, and still have done what I did? 

On my way out, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking, reflecting is maybe a better word. The only thing worse than imagining you reading this is imagining that you won’t. Because if you don’t, it will mean you went first. And as God is my witness, I couldn’t live without you. 

Diane Parrish lives with her husband and their elderly Corgi, Finn, in the Northeast United States.  A former practicing attorney who wrote fiction she kept under wraps, Diane recently completed her first novel, currently out on submission. Her essays have appeared in The National Gardener, Calla Press Literary Journal, BookTrib, and elsewhere.  When Diane isn’t writing, she serves several non-profits and curates a small art gallery she co-founded in 2011. She is working on her second book, a novel set in 18th century Virginia.

1 Comment

  1. Nick

    A great blend of dark humor and love’s complexities!


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