To: Athens

third year julia mun

photo by kelsey dabrowski

photo by kelsey dabrowski

Dear Athens,

I’m writing to you, unsure of what to say. Every time someone asks how I am doing with you, my half-hearted smile and praises gnaw away at my stomach. I feel sick from fabricating this facade, and I spend my time closing my eyes, dreaming, hoping of anywhere else. 

I had expectations before coming to you, which I know is dangerous— I couldn’t help myself. But now, all I do is crave. I think about soaring skyscrapers rather than your towering trees. I think about neon lights dancing on my skin rather than fluorescent lamps dotting dark roads. I think about creating my home rather than adapting to one with you. You are a constant reminder of all the things I can’t have. 

And so, I’ve been running. Running to fill your emptiness that I can’t seem to escape from. But, I’ve run so far and all I do is gasp for breath, blinking away the black spots in my vision. I know now I can only run so far on my fantasies, and there is no point in running any further. You are everywhere I go.

But, what happens when I stop running? What happens when I slow down, breathe you in?

I was afraid my angry, restless heart would take root. And truthfully, after two years of being with you, it still hasn’t. I’m not sure it will. In between each protesting breath, I am beginning to recognize there is a magic in you. I see you awashing me in the soft sunsets through the streets of brick buildings. I see you echoing in the faces I have come to know and love. I see you. 

Yes, there is a magic in you I still don’t fully understand. For now, that is enough. Through you, I finally understand that there is always something out there.

I just have to be still enough to see it. 


The Liminal Local

Happy Monday