Megan Baker

There’s a cold, dull ache inside my chest every time I look at photographs. I don’t know if this is how nostalgia is supposed to feel, but that is what I call it. There’s something about the pain you feel when you get hit with a sharp cold wind. There’s something about how the world feels and sounds when it’s coated in snow, it’s so bright and perhaps post apocalyptic, as if you had slipped away for a moment to find that the only things left in this world are just objects, birds, snow, and a light cold wind. But the world still doesn’t feel so empty because there are still objects. There’s still photos, there’s still things. Things that make my chest ache. I wonder if there are thousands of tiny ghosts fluttering about inside me. Ones I’ve picked up along my journeys, for every door knob touched there’s a piece of someone’s soul, becoming a part of me. I imagine in every object in this world there’s a glittering flutter of millions pieces, of millions of souls. They are bursting about and attaching themselves on to you and slowly, within time, coming inside of you, collecting in your chest, and creating that small but ever apparent ache. Perhaps the ache is a tapping from the inside of your chest, a gentle tapping on the ribs, and thousands of little bits of old burnt out souls repeating, “Do you miss me? Do you miss me?”

And maybe some day, when it’s silent except for birds and sound of a chilled wind, when the only sights are things drowned out by the brightness of the sky and the snow, when the whole world feels large and empty but never ending, maybe some of those old souls want to escape, feeling as if the ache inside you has grown too populated, too apparent. They long to burst out, descending into the light, into the snow, into places that don’t exist.