Our tree stands by the lakeside, a still sentinel eternally watching, waiting.
The house, our house, is to big for me now. The memories it holds to painful - the pain that only love brings.
I wander through each room, to say goodbye. I can't bear to let go completely but I don't know if I will come back here.
The attic, full of higgledy piggledy memories, special times, painful times. Broken, much loved, bric-a-brac hidden in dark corners and, scattered throughout, snapshots of our life.
In the bedroom I hear the sound of your laughter, your pleasure, quietly now beneath the beat of my heart. Our bed collects dust, it's covers unruffled.
The bathroom, clean and clinical, was once a playground. A slippy, sensuous place of wild laughter and desire.
I stop for a while in the lounge where secrets were shared, plans made and exciting schemes hatched. The old sofa, where we sat for hours reading, talking and sometimes cuddling together when we were to weary to move.
I pass through the kitchen, so utilitarian now, sides wiped clean of the crumbs of our last snack. The cupboards stripped of all the things we loved to share.
I look towards the cellar door but I won't go down there. I know that nestles there, in a strong box, surrounded by bubble wrap, my heart will be safe. It belongs here, I don't need it any more.
I leave our house, windows firmly shuttered so that no passer-by can see into our life. Locking the door I leave a key beneath a stone, in case you happen by.
And as I walk away I steal a backwards glance. The house stands in darkness but for a single light shining to guide you, should you pass one day. And in our garden a single willow stands waiting, weeping.