The break-up is all that is the case

Every break-up is fundamentally banal, except your own. You're going to get a little maudlin and self-indulgent for a minute. Your friends will just have to deal.

The break-up is a totality of things, not of facts. There are no facts in break-ups, only things that remind us of facts we once knew, and have forgotten.

The break-up is determined by the things, and by their being all the things. Tiny white paper discs fallen in drifts over the carpet, devil duckie by the vanity mirror, a lingering impression of white rattan.

For the totality of things determines what is the case, and also whatever is not the case. You can move the furniture but you can't paint the walls - this is the case. The world splits open like a melon on a stone - this is not the case. You're older now, and everything happens on the periphery.

The things in a broken-up space are the world. Upend the bed, take the pictures off the wall, figure out what to do with that one painting - saw it in half, an X and an O apiece? You will require boxes. The liquor store will be helpful in this matter and in others.

The world divides into things. In this way it can be taped up in cardboard boxes, slid down stairs and into waiting trucks. The temptation to put all your books into one large box will be strong - resist it. It will be too heavy to carry. It all comes apart so easily, but must be spirited away a little at a time.

Each thing can be the case or not the case while everything else tumbles down. What does it feel like to disappear? Is it a numbness, or is there pain? Or does it tickle? What does it look like when we disappear? A sudden blinking out, or a slow fade? A dissolution? Will there be a sparkle, a flash of light, a gust of wind, a sound? Will we see each others' eyes yawn wide with realization as we vanish, or will it be too sudden? Will the scenery behind us leak through our bodies as we become translucent? Will we be violently ripped from the earth, or will we float into the sky? Or will we sink into the ground?

Late last night you burst out of your room, panicked. "What is it?" I asked, not grasping your shoulders. "Nothing," you said, "a noise woke me up," and while we both knew what it was, we did not say its name.