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  • Writer's pictureJADE

The Museum of Past Lovers

Updated: Jun 29, 2022

Part. 1 — The Garden Gallery

The first thing I saw was him; that was where it all began. I walked towards the gallery of high walls and transparent ceilings; in there I saw a garden, a clear blue sky, and surrounding it was a collection filled with all the memories we shared and our favorite things combined. Memorabilia of musical tickets, bowling alleys, cereals, and rainy nights were showcased as if it was a rarity.

The smell of late summer filled the gallery, and dandelions emerged creating a flower path; leading me towards a hologram of someone who once had my heart. In that gallery, I was teleported as if I was still in that garden. As if I never left.

I knew we had it good for a while, but what comes after seems like an eternity. Seasons changed and so did he. Even after all that, I still caught myself smiling over temporary things and empty promises.

Part. 2 — Hall of Heartbreaks

Then the room shifted. As the lighting darkens towards a room that was filled with grotesque paintings and abstract pieces of the past. I couldn’t see them in detail— much like my memory of those days. A darker room awaits me. It plays a documentary the moment I walked in, it was called "Oneirataxia"* and it would play every 1AM.

I could never make out what the show was about, but I found myself watching it on my many sleepless nights. All I know was by the end of it; I'd feel hollow—as if my heart was taken away.

The heart of the matter is my heart was not the matter. It was disregarded and cast aside, I can't count how many times I have to pick up the pieces but I could never put them back together. These pieces; look like shards, some look blunt and the others, jagged.

After so many times of being broken, I forgot what the shape of my heart looks like. So tell me, how can I fix something when I don't know what it looks like as a whole.

Part. 3 — Exhibition of Temporary Affairs

A steep staircase led me down; where I could see no end, I held on to the railings. Unlike before, I would stumble & trip over small things that weren't even there. Blurry faces, one after the other. Throughout the surrounding audio was played filled with whispers, snide remarks, and eyes that follow everywhere I go.

Blinding bright lights would come and go, there was no consistency. The walls were marked with red lipsticks and scented with cheap cologne. Frames upon frames of faces I no longer recognize, in frames of sharp edges and disfigured corners — a collection of serial affairs.

The temperature was coldest there, compared to the first two I went through. I shivered as I made it through the other side of the room.

Part. 4 — Archives of Daydreams & Nightmares

I found myself in the storage of hidden hearts, I noticed I was in an attic — a few inches taller I would have probably bumped my head to the roof, there was barely any sunlight coming through from all the stacked boxes. Full of dust, covered in white cloths and filled with the smell of old. They look like ghosts. Spiderwebs connect the boxes in between like neurons.

Hearts in form of gems from my past lovers shine in my proximity, as they convince me to take them back. If I hold his gem then I’ll be with him once again, but once I do, the rest come as well; the heartbreaks, the pain & endless sleepless night filled with unanswered questions and second guessings.

These gems; glistens in the promise of better days, but it was in those days when he left when all I wanted was for him to stay. I wanted us to stay.

Part. 5 — Anamorphosis of Memorabilia

The last stop was this shop, filled with handmade hearts, promises in bottles, and kisses wrapped in bows, I was tempted. In the end, I didn’t get anything, they were nice to see but these are the things of the past.

There were so many I wanted to take; a jar of your kisses, a thirty-day pass of snuggles, and an audiobook of you telling our story. The thought of you comes to mind and how I would love to see you again, but I don't have the luxury to purchase these gifts. As it can only be bought with the pieces of my heart which I am not ready to give away just yet, especially not to repeat the past that brought me misery.

It is in the past I won't linger, but from the past, I will learn for the future.

In this Museum of Past Lovers, I will come back as I curate new hearts, lovers, or anything in between. I will continue to fill with stories of my past & current lovers, there will always be a constant addition of halls and galleries as I go.


*Oneirataxia - the inability to distinguish between fantasy and reality.


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