there is a simple soul inside this complex heart. there are words i could never entice out of you but volumes that you speak with one look into my eyes. i knew it from the moment i stepped off that precipice that you were right – it was going to be okay. perhaps i already knew it in my own heart but to have someone reach for me…i closed my eyes and exhaled.
my path has felt so rocky as of late. please hold my face in your hands and let me close my eyes. the solace of our conversation is what i’ve unknowingly craved.
the other day i stood on a hilltop looking down at a slab of concrete. forever in our hearts, it was inscribed. a middle initial rather than a full name. i found that i still spoke to my father like we were on the phone. i remember him over the phone more than i do in person. it was always deferential, privilege, to get to see him when i was young. i could never expect him more than here or there. i was daddy’s girl and the black sheep, all rolled into one. i was always waiting for him to speak first, get out all of his hurts first, before i dared to speak. wondering if he’d ask how i was. i stood there, balling, trying to tell his corpse about my life and could hear him making fun of me. two years dead and he’s still mocking me for living a life that he could never understand. he’s frozen in fucking time, the record with a scratch on it, repeating, repeating.
i look down at my feet and reminisce of my years with another man of a similar style but different thread. following my dream of spending life on the ocean, sand between my toes, watching her gallop down the shoreline as we laughed at her running back and forth, chasing the gulls. how did those years escape my mind? i was there, wasn’t i? we just were never in line to last forever. he never really understood who i was. i wanted to lay out blankets and take long naps next to the water. he wore dress shoes and couldn’t relax in the same way. i wanted him to play in the water with me, kiss me in the waves. he wanted to linger in guitar stores and hang out in dive bars. i wanted to grow tomatoes and make us dinner. he grabbed himself a burrito on the way home.
not that we didn’t have our moments. you can’t love someone for seventeen years and not have your beautiful memories. guess after time passes you have to think a bit harder about those times that you tucked away in your memory banks. one of the most terrible days of your life is telling the one you’d stand in front of a bus for that it’s over. a more quiet, but sad day? when, a few years later, you realized that while you’ll always love him in one small pocket of your heart, that he’s no longer the love of your life. that you know that there must be someone out there who would not just see your heart but treasure it. the kind of person who you could not only be yourself with, but travel along the same path.
i loved him madly. he was my best friend. but i am not the same having seen the moon shine on the other side of the world, as someone once said. i am not that girl of sixteen, or twenty-five, or even thirty, anymore. in two and a half months i will be 37. not a momentous number, i suppose, but a reminder of the life i have lived and how i have evolved. it’s how i now know.
finally. i know.
i want acceptance of who i am even if i’m not fully comprehended.
i want kisses on my bare shoulders on the mornings when he wakes up before me.
i want to give my unfiltered love and have it accepted. without justification.
he’ll let me see him. fully.
he’ll see me. fully.
i want his imperfection. his beautiful heart. his friendship. his loyalty.
my ally. my lover. my partner in crime.
and the one who i can laugh til i snort with.
my friendships that i’ve developed in the last couple of years have changed me so deeply. i have changed, and i have found my heart in places all over the world, from the urban bungalows to the island hideaways to the seaside flats to the countryside i’ve yet to discover.
gentle ribbing, reminding me that they see me. fully.
open ears, reminding me that they hear me. fully.
arms i can fall into with laughter or tears, reminding me that they love me. fully.
there is murmuring in the background, there is haze in the distance…
i look in your eyes,
i don’t need to see the road ahead
that you will look after me.