Cigarette Papers

As soon as I saw it, I instinctively knew it had once been yours.  That small, green box: its once crisp, white papers, soiled now by the falling Autumn rain.
I wondered for how long it had lain there; how many other dog walkers had taken the path beside it, and of those, how many had seen it and had still passed it by. And then I pondered the manner in which it had been discarded. Had it accidently been left behind, or had it been deliberately abandoned? A new start, perhaps? Or another loss; another victim of distraction?
In my heart’s eye I saw you, slumped upon the bench above the box’s muddy resting place; watery eyes fixed on the fading future once so clearly before you. And then my vision changed, and instead I saw your heavy eyes lowered to the grass at your feet – the grass you’d once trodden together – and onto the wild flowers you’d once gifted, and to the glossy beds of clover you’d once shared.
How long had you sat upon that bench? How long…
I finally turned reluctantly away, leaving the box where it had fallen, all the while wondering if instead I should pick it up and take it home.
And as I left, it struck me that you and that inanimate object sadly seemed to have so much in common.