Drink Magazine

in Absence

By Bryan Roth @bryandroth
in absence

One of the hardest things to do as a writer is the very first: looking at a blank page on your computer. The emptiness of that document, in all its potential, can create a wonderful and scary feeling. The absence of words is freeing in its capacity to allow for exploration and understanding. For good and bad, your ideas, thoughts, opinions, experiences.

I face this brief moment daily, a professional circumstance that sometimes feels masochistic. Words aren't always forced, but the emptiness of that page is daunting and calls to be filled. There will always be more space.

I now find myself with a similar situation at home, both in terms of its physical and audible nature. I've lost my writing partner, Caesar, and his companionship and inspiration along with him. A constant beckoning of his "meow-wow" voice or the rhythmic pulse of his purrs were a big part of my writing process, but also life itself.

Routines have already changed slightly, destined to continue despite shadows playing tricks on my mind, imagining him existing in emptiness around me. It's barely been a couple days, and these things don't happen in literal overnight fashion. Eventually I'll probably stop talking out loud to a best friend who's no longer there.


Everything about my space now feels enormous. Home seems bigger, and my life smaller.

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