There was a stillness in you, that I’d always liked. A stillness that I’d already fallen for. It was in the way your eyes focused. How your fingers had touched mine with such tender intention. I saw it in your interactions with my family; the way you’d sat through dinner with a hand on my leg and a line of conversation and a small smile that brought my blood unrest. You’d proved it when you’d held me on a lazy Sunday as I told you nothing in life was ok and I’d wanted release. You’d counteracted my wild with your calm, cool, collected. And I think slowly that stillness found a way into my voice and my heartbeat and my want for you. We became the rested souls. But maybe that was too little to live with. Maybe that stillness had settled over the burn of the way that I thought I’d loved you. Maybe that intentional touch became unwanted and the unrest too permanent. And maybe I’d found that release in the stillness of your body, but maybe that was the problem.
Her body is not something to be taken lightly. It is hers and there is no changing that. She may give it to you, she may not. It is her choice. She may adorn it with ink or metal or vanilla scents. She may cover it or she may not. She may scar it and make it bleed or take the perfect care of it. She may do anything, and it will always be her choice. You have no control over her skin or what’s beyond. You control your actions, your consequences. You may do what you want with her choices, but you may not make them for her.
I had this big window in my room when I was little where I liked to watch the sun set after finishing my homework. And as the seasons changed those sunsets changed and I think I began to change with them. The navy of winter gave way to crimson in spring, and with it came the year my heart was broken. And when spring became summer the sun set a little later so eventually I set a little later. Homework turned to broken curfew and nighttime only brought nostalgia and hunger and urgency. So when daylight gave me distaste in the fall of the following year I fell back into the rhythm of the suns goodbye. Watching out my window became watching from some strangers bed; and rather than falling in love when the sky permitted that childlike yellow and those sorrow-less reds, I fell apart. That was the year I found God. But God had a funny way of ignoring my midnight plea’s so I changed a little more. I found comfort in the wrong set of arms and solace in the pain-prescriptions. I discovered Jesus with your hands around my neck and felt reality in the weight of my own heart. My window stayed locked and often my homework undone; so when the sky began to suffocate and I flunked out of school I blamed the changing seasons. I’d never asked to fall in love with the tragedy of it all. Never wanted night to become my best friend and most viscous enemy. Never prayed for summer to end or spring to move on, or the sun to steal my innocence. These were the years I let go. These were the years I found myself. Carved and refined and worked on my rock until I became a David of modern day. These were the lessons. The years that changed my life.
I got lost in the ocean once. When I was six I found myself in a place where my toes couldn’t touch the sand. I wanted to breathe in the color of the waves that crashed in my hands. I tried and I panicked. The water didn’t want my body // I worry now that you do not want my body. I want to breathe in the blue of your eyes and the wash of your love. I can no longer touch the sand. Please do not let me drown.
you are so full of love, remember that. You are beautiful and kind and important. You can do the things you put your mind to. Remember nature relaxes you, and it will always be there for you. No matter what. Tomorrow is a new day and it’s ok to spend a day or two recuperating. You come first. You’re incredibly talented and this right here is one of your best qualities. One of the things you love the most. You need to stay organized and prioritize better. You can get it done, I promise it’s not too hard. Music also makes you feel better – remember these little things. I know you can make yourself proud because I always, always believe in you. Find your roots, and stick to them. Find what’s important to you and follow it like the damn North Star. I know you can do it. I know we can do it. Never forget that.
Your thumb brushes my bottom lip and suddenly I’m crying in earnest. The palm cradling my white hot cheek is rough, worn-in. Your fingers are reaching for the base of my hairline, holding the bones of my spine in place. I love you here. Forehead to forehead, waiting while my body breaks within yours. We are the love they talk about, here. The grandeur and the painted picture and the good honest truth.
You look at me the way all women want to be looked at by a man. You press lips to the skin between my eyes, say ‘it’s ok’ with your fingers down my back. Here, I am vulnerable. I am a target that I know you will not shoot. Here, I am all yours.
I hold your fingers in mine. Let myself feel small. Trace the life-line, heart-line, fate-line of your palm. I think about us inside those lines. Suddenly your body yanks at mine. Suddenly we are two people once again. But as you wrap me fully in your arms and squeeze just tight enough, I know I am safe as myself. Head tucked into your neck, arms instinct-X’ed over my heart, body rebuilding; I let the tears hiccup and stop. I can feel the smile in your chest, the heat of your happiness. ‘Enough for us both’ I (always) think.
You tangle your hands in my hair, distance us and watch. I let a smile tease my lips. You let yours fly the coop. Then you kiss me. But you don’t just kiss me, no. This time is different. This type is different. It’s the type where you know you’re in trouble. The type you’re already an addict for. The type that people write books about.
It’s the grand theft of the heart, and no one is around to catch us.