Kept Dying B Y D E I R D R E F L O O D
And Dumbledore kept dying.
For years. Over and over.
Upstate that one summer. The last summer.
The one where everything ended. It was the night the final film
Everyone sat upstairs watching marathons of old magic
In the Great Hall, when everything was bright.
(and you’re sitting right over there. While I’m writing.
“I’m surprised,” you said
“I’m talking about Harry Potter
and you’re just agreeing with me.”
you broke my anti social wallowing.
“well you’re right, and I’m thoughtless.”
And there goes my dramatic nonsense.
“I don’t pretend to understand you” he said
and who are you? he asked me.
cause when he asked who’d win in a fight…
a vampire or a werewolf.
I said vampire without looking up.
And didn’t start forming an argument.
I just said it and it was over.
“wait what? You always say werewolf.” He said confused.
Do I? I really can’t remember.
And he’s looking at me like he doesn’t know who I am.
Like I’ve betrayed him, for answering in a way he didn’t expect.
Like his ability to guess
everything I’m thinking, everything I want
not because he cant remember
But because I am not the same.
“well I guess vampires are pretty limited
since they can’t leave in
But so are werewolves
they’re only creatures for like one night a month.
So yeah, vampires.”
“no, some werewolves can
change when they want to,
“but shape shifters are not the same thing.
that doesn’t count.”
And it was like a script, who’d win in a fight…
Means ‘I’m only asking you this,
so I can pretend everything is normal for a while
So I can enjoy things you say
And because I do not know any geeks anymore
And none of my friends care about dragons and werewolves.’
And then I ordered Mexican food.
And I called them before I had figured out what I wanted.
And he said “you’re gonna get four steak tacos. You
get four steak tacos”
And I ordered something else.
And who are you? he thought. And we’re
in this room. The room we wrote the nonnegotiables list in.
the list that decided our fate.
the day I picked you.
And I kissed you when this magic moment played on the radio.
And last week it came on the juke box in the bar.
And I was playing pool
And I thought I’d collapse.
So I grabbed Biggs hand and started dancing with him.
And then I walked away.
And you’re here.
And I’m writing.)
And when we were walking home last week,
Rizzi said its cool when you work nights,
‘cause naps are awesome, you’ll wake up and the suns still down.
And we laughed cause we all knew what he meant.
It sounds like a mistake.
But it isn’t
Naps when the suns still down,
And there’s all this time, in a sleepless sleep-filled city.
All this time, to see and do and be.
In the dark.
In the best time. the nighttime.
When you bring sunglasses with you when you go out at 9
Knowing that there’s a possibility
you’ll stay over that guys house
and sleep with him even though you shouldn’t
And you’ll have to leave in the morning
and protect your retinas.
We don’t wear sunglasses at night,
because we’re too cool for light fixtures.
We wear them. because night leaves and we don’t.
And because our decision making abilities. Are terrible.
in The Great Hall
that brightly lit room of students,
tiny wizards waiting to be taught the ways of the
The Wizarding World.
A world unlike ours.
A world without sunglasses and bad decisions.
A world where night is night. And light is light.
And naps don’t make you miserable
or happy. And you can tell the difference.
And I wept.
Cause he died all over again.
Cause I blasted Dumbledore’s Farewell on the stereo
And made him die all over again.
And I curled up on the couch in the dark
And you cooked a late dinner in the kitchen that wasn’t ours.
And everyone was watching TV upstairs and I
Collapsed on the tiled floor and
About his death, about Malfoy’s redemption.
About loss and life, and wonder,
Please my heart is breaking.
These violin reels are hauntingly beautiful
The type of beautiful that runs into you and slams into your chest.
And stays there. Forever.
The type of beautiful that makes you feel everything all at once.
So much that it’s hard to recognize what’s what.
The type of beautiful
I will never be.
And even before the finale. When the 6th came out in theatres
We went to that old movie house in Suffern,
We were all still teenagers.
It was you, and Melissa and Niamh and my parents.
Mom and Jeff sat four rows behind us.
And we couldn’t stop staring at the
Organ on the balcony
And the faces carved into the pillars.
It was like a church. A dark church
And it was ancient.
We put our feet up on the hundred year old seats in front of us,
And Melissa passed us twizzlers.
It must have been twizzlers
So I asked you.
Cause I couldn’t remember
And you said
Niamh had a can of sprite I think
I remember cause she spilled it on the floor and
Everything was sticky.
It was something so normal
It must of happened.
We should ask them,
And the movie started. Except the Great Hall wasn’t so bright
Towards the end of the series.
Everything just kept getting
And I should of remembered this was the one where he dies.
I should of stopped you from seeing it.
Even though you already knew.
It was all too soon.
It was the end of July.
It had only been a week
Since your father died.
But you were with Niamh and Melissa and I
And my parents were four rows behind us
And it was dark
And we weren’t in Queens
You started crying.
And I didn’t know what to do.
And I’m sorry.
They don’t understand him!
Do I understand?
And the whole Universe everything was falling cracking
He was falling off the tower in slow motion and we were Snape. We were Harry.
Watching him leave us.
And I was on the tiles.
And I couldn’t stop crying.
Its finally over.
And I am relieved.
And I am grieving.
And I do not know what to do.
It wasn’t exciting.
It wasn’t lets all go on an adventure.
The last adventure. With Harry
and watch what we’ve all already read.
And see what we all already know.
And wait for Plunkett outside the theater
and when he ran over I was pretending to be less excited than I was.
And we’re standing on my stoop. You’d say,
“Its so perfect that he’s not perfect.”
I’d light my cigarette
“Her making him a
was the best part of the book.”
You spoke about him like you knew him.
And I will never know a math major who
spoke about books the way you do.
And this is the only way I know how to tell you I miss you.
To say nothing.
And write about worlds I cant belong to.
And now you’re ranting about
and I’m leaning on the
Railing listening to you
the way you leaned on the counter
Frying potatoes listening to me
The night I realized
Everything was ending
When we were geared up.
for that funeral we wont actually attend.
Wands in holsters. And elf ears.
Over jeans and sneakers.
I am of both worlds.
And the light.
I am the fae
and the mortals.
I am both.
It was the end.
Of all things.
And the beginning,
and Harry defined it all.
he created every
my life is built of books and movies.
Timelines not directed by
But led by
release dates. And lines outside forbidden planet.
That was before the last book.
My life is navigatable
only because of the things
and people that I knew
when things happened.
I am not the defining characteristic,
I am background noise.
When did that happen.
Who was I dating?
If you can pin point who I was fucking.
You can pinpoint when… anything really.
They lead my life.
And Dumbledore left me. over and over and over again.
She wrote it so he wouldn’t die once.
He died. When the 6th came out.
He died when the film came out.
He died when I read it.
He died when I remembered.
He died on the tiles,
In the theatre.
In the reading room.
In the alley way when Eric screamed it to the windows.
In that song.
After all this time?
Old and decrepit. I will sit in arm rests.
And I will cry on tiles.
And I will remember only
based on guys that
Picked who I was and
when I was
And I was nothing.
I was vacant.
happen without them.
I will weep.
And I will miss him.
And I will hate him.
And love him. and know him.
And watch him fall from towers in my mind.