Hello was the last thing I remember hearing, before I was paralyzed by him; before I had any recollection of what occurred before what occurred; before the effects of alcohol drowned out the noise around us and intensified the energy between us bringing our bodies closer; before his flirtatious tongue wrapped itself around every word and caught me by surprise; before a sudden collapse of morality covered the both of us in dust.
We were strangers among strangers.
There was something compelling about this man I didn’t know. There was a feeling of excitement, which consumed me, all of me, and traveled from my heart and moved beyond the waist down. And there I was- speechless and confused and tormented by his presence. We stood in plain view of one another, among hundreds of thousands of other people passing through the wired space between us. Despite being afraid of this feeling and the inexplicable transaction between our eyes, I couldn’t look away. The way he held his stare and grazed the grass with his feet in an effortless charismatic way; the way he interrupted the space between us and claimed it as ours made me want to devour every last bit of him. I was smitten.
There we were, amid the sound of chatter and the sound of bands playing fiddles, trumpets and harmonicas. Safely tucked away, we disappeared beneath a canopy of trees and twinkling bud lights strung together with wire. Caught in a whirlwind of sheer freedom from our inhibitions we were swallowed by our words and the alcohol buzz. There were no walls between us, or bold yellow lines etched in the ground, declaring that we stay on our own side. There were no signs claiming do not cross or beware of broken heart. For the first time I felt a sudden urge I had never felt before and this peculiar voice behind me tickled my ear and whispered, Go in further. There in the middle of the field, among thousands of people, I was kissing a stranger- a beautiful American stranger.
And there you were- a witness to what I had been a victim of many times. You stood there and watched him indulge in what you claimed you never wanted- me. And it made you angry. I dared him to go in for another and while he kissed me I thought about all the times I stood in your shoes. I remembered all the times I wanted to disconnect myself from your displays of affection with other women. I remembered all of the times I hoped our conversations would end with, “I love you.” I remembered all the times you told me how proud you were of me and how special you thought I was. I remembered how you drove to my house to kiss me and wipe away my tears. I remember the snowstorms we got stuck in, the times we discussed politics, literature, music and philosophy, and the nights which turned into mornings. I remembered the time you looked at me with genuine eyes and said there’s just something about you. I remembered the time you told me we should just be friends.
We couldn’t be friends and we couldn’t be in love with other people.
(Photo Credit: annstreetstudio.com)
Tales from a Coffee Shop…
I had the pleasure of meeting the kindest man named Jackson at the coffee shop yesterday evening. His infectious warmth and contagious smile is hard to ignore. He seems to light up the coffee shop whenever he enters it and he’s always addressing people as dear or lovely or sweetheart having never met them before. It always makes me smile. I had seen him a few times before, typing away on his lap top but I had never spoken to him until yesterday. I’ll definitely be adding him to my mug of coffee shop friends. I suppose you can already tell since he has found a place on my blog. Anyway, I’ll stop rambling now. Here is how the story goes…
A tall and lanky elderly man grabbed his coffee, walked by my table, paused and took a few steps back towards me.
“Hellooo. Watcha readin’?” he asked.
His grey eyes and face graced with wrinkles introduced a feeling of warmth and sheer happiness. He was an old fellow with a young soul and heart of gold. You could just tell.
“I’m reading Letters to a Young Poet,” I smiled holding the tiny book up.
“Letters to a Young Poet? Do you write poetry?”
I turned a little red and answered shyly, “I write some.”
“Aah so you’re a poet. Nice to meet you, I’m a writer,” he said.
It was interesting to see that he hadn’t introduced himself by name; rather he identified himself and I by our artistic endeavors. I asked him what kind of writer he was. “I’m an aspiring writer. I’m writing a book,” he told me with poise.
“About what?” I asked.
“It’s about the yearnings of life. We yearn for love. We yearn for happiness. We yearn for whatever our heart desires. So I’m writing a book about that.”
Such is life I thought. Come to think of it, it had never dawned on me until this moment. Jackson had a point. We spend most of our lives yearning for things that aren’t there. We try our damndest to end our search for love, for happiness, for success. It’s part of who we are as human beings and it’s part of the journey we call life.
The conversations we have when meeting new people make our day anything but dull. I find it fascinating and inspiring. Sometimes there’s a reason behind meeting an unfamiliar face. I always welcome new conversations with acquainted strangers. The people we meet along the way give us something to think about. They even have the power to inspire us. Jackson inspired this post.