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Kay C., 09 Mar '13

How beautiful you are, how real, how lovely.

You're a little different every time.

Your footsteps in your strappy, worn sandals are light, when you surprise me, fingers fumbling about my face from behind as you obscure my sight for the briefest of moments, even when your laughter gives you away. It's bright and clear, an echo of bells, much like you and the earnestness you wear so easily like your sweet pastel cardigans.

Sometimes you're shy, a wallflower, hair falling into your face and softly about your shoulders when we kiss. In this incarnation, you have this dark and honeyed voice; you know I love it when you sing to me, taking little melodies from our shared memories and weaving them together when we're alone. You're so cold, usually, but your hands are hot when you cup my cheeks, when your lips trace the curve of my brow, and you tremble with your uncertainty. It's the only time I see you so unsure. If I look closely, really look, I see glimpses of your fear, your wariness, and the shadows that you believe you see in me.

(I don't think you knew this at the time, darling: some are real. Some of them are your own shadows you see reflected in my eyes.)

Other times, you're a force of nature. Assertion is your armour, your sharp words your weapons, and you wield both with immeasurable skill. It's a beauty to watch. Like a knight of the frayed ages you command the field, effortless, disciplined, ruthless. I watch you, mesmerised, a moth before a flame I know will consume me, but I simply cannot help edging ever closer even as the curls of heat begin to lick at my skin. Slowly, slowly, I begin to burn. After several months and moons you forget; I, too, become an enemy in your eyes and you turn that wrath on me. That's when I should know to stop, but I don't. You're glorious to be near, and you cut me, always, like the little pieces of broken glass that remain of us. Somehow, I don't want to leave. But eventually, I do. I have to.

Most times, you linger in my life for but a moment. You saunter in, looking haunted, shadows beneath your eyes and trailing your every step, dark things in the curves of your ribs and your mind. You become my partner on the floor for a few bars or three, and then the song changes. The tempo escalates, and then you're another person entirely; a vivacious young thing with dark curls and a wicked smile, slender against my arms as you hook a leg around mine to come closer, skirts fluttering around you. I blink. You change again as the lights do, too. You're taller now, in the darkness, solemn with shorter hair, and you whisper words I can't hear as you turn me around, catch me with a clumsier step.

Every time I turn, every time I shift, every time the instruments escalate into a crescendo and fall, you're someone else. Sometimes you stay for longer, for more measures than I thought you would, and then there's a kiss, a thought, a confession. Sometimes you're barely there, and I barely remember you.

And then you're gone, because you leave. Or because I do.

I've caught glances of you, in every instance of you I have encountered. I'm sorry we could not remain together, because our gravitation doesn't run true in the way we hoped it would, or you hoped, or I hoped. Those paths for two we thought would bleed on forever into the horizon we found would eventually split, becoming narrower until only one could walk either path. And that's all right. Farewells are sad, but we can thread thin slivers of hope into them.

You know:

You will make someone very happy.

So wonderfully and blessedly happy. She'll cry sometimes at how lucky she is, and wrap her arms around your neck before she whispers the hundred ways she loves you into your ear.

That someone just won't be me.

Comments · 1

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  • Angela Watt said...

    This is a wonderful piece particularly the paragraph that starts "Sometimes you're shy". I absolutely loved it and the ending is so bittersweet.

    • Posted 6 years ago