It’s a rainy morning on our coast. The clouds are hanging low over the mountains, the bay is still and grey and the whole huge park is soaking up the rain. E and I spent the morning snuggled on her bed reading books and now she has gone off with my aunt to visit the library and have adventures among the puddles.

I have a pot of tea brewing. The apartment is clean and quiet, peaceful and light with its views of the ocean, park and mountains. I will spend the afternoon writing and then make soup and grilled cheese for the adventurers come back for supper.

I think: I should be happy. I am so lucky. And I am. And I am not.

I miss her. That is all: I just miss her. And so the peacefulness is not quite as peaceful and in the grey of the bay I feel a new emptiness, and though I look for her in the mists that slip down the mountains and sneak through the treetops, I know she is not there.

Gone, gone, gone. Repeat refrain. Gone, gone, gone. Repeat refrain.

I sip my tea, and get back to work, and she is gone, but her absence sits with me, an emptiness that aches, a palpable void, and all I can do, I think, is to learn to sit with it, too. So we sit together, she and I, two ghosts on a grey day in a quiet apartment; we sit together.