Beating a Dead Horse

I expect that we’re all familiar with this saying. ’Beating a dead horse.’ When you dredge up a situation over and over again, even after it’s long dead, but it’s like you can’t stop. You just can’t stop talking about it. Even as you speak, you can feel yourself being annoying and yet, you just. can’t. stop.

Until now.

This is the last one for you.

I’m finally burying this horse.

Beating a Dead Horse

I hit it.

Once.

Twice.

A third time.

I come back the next day,

and hit it again.

And again.

The next day is the same.

And the day after that,

And so on and so on.

Until he stepped out.

Out of the shadows,

to whisper,

“Haven’t you hit it enough?”

And I think for a moment,

that maybe it will be never be enough,

because every other day, I wake up

and return to this same spot.

This same bump in the road.

And I hit it,

Repeatedly.

The next day, he’s there again.

Waiting. Expecting.

Together, we stare down at it.

“It’s been dead,” he states,

“Longer than it’s been alive now.”

And I cringe.

I’m dragging this out now.

I know that, I can feel it in my bones.

The absurdity of the situation,

festering in my mind and yet,

still, I can’t walk away.

I can’t seem to tell my feet to go.

Go home. Go, forget this place.

The next day, he’s there again.

I ignore him,

content in my misery,

welcoming the pain.

Because at least I feel something.

I lift the bat to swing,

Once again at the dead thing on the ground.

It arch’s and then,

it stops.

I look back,

to see him holding the bat

firm in his grip,

caring eyes locked on me.

“Let. Go,” he breathes.

I look to the bat.

Slowly, one by one,

my fingers lifting.

Once it clears my hands,

he steps back.

Tears are falling down my cheeks,

burning my eyes.

He takes another step back,

and keeps going until

there’s nothing but a blur

in the distance.

And when I turn around,

the lump is gone.

It’s just me.

There’s an ache in my chest,

bigger than what was there before,

a loneliness that’s different.

But i take a deep breath,

because it’s making room

for something new.

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