Thursday, April 26, 2012
There once was a girl who fell in love with everyone, all the time. She loved to love people, and things, and learning was always her favorite activity. But she learned to hide these feelings from those who would take advantage. For a long time she searched and searched, but there was no one she really loved anymore; everyone seemed to her to be the same. It was like looking for a quarter in the Atlantic Ocean.
Then one day she found him. He was beautiful and sexy and kind and fun, everything she had always dreamed of. She didn't just fall for him, she collapsed over him, in a state that some might call faint or "swooning." He liked her too, she thought, but he wouldn't tell her so, or he would say it in a cryptic way, like, "I like you a lot," whenever she wanted him to say, "I love you."
They spent many months together, but distantly, because they lived so far apart. They saw each other every now and then, but it became too much. And his work became overpowering. They made plans to meet again, to go camping and dance the nights away, but he got too busy and cancelled. When he didn't call for over a week, her feelings began to boil in a fury, and she wanted to know what was going on, and why he'd called her a good person when she needed to know that he liked her.
"Well, we're not dating," he said. And just like that, like the snap of someone's fingers, she knew that he had found someone else. She talked to him for a little while, damming back tears that could fill Lake Powell.
She didn't want to end up like her parents--miserable and alone, or miserable and obsessive. She didn't want to be the girl who jumped like a spider from boy to boy until she was so destroyed that she'd give up all hope. She cried for a long time. But then she remembered that he was a useless boy, and she didn't need him anyhow. She erased his number from her phone, deleted him from her Facebook Friends list, and tried to move on. But always in the back of her mind she was wondering, maybe someday...
And she went on her road trip to meet Someone New. Happily every after?
Tuesday, April 10, 2012
The halls were overflowing with your scent: sharp apple tinged with pear. Yet no matter where I looked, you could not be found. I had every room searched: among the tankards, the office, amidst the barrels of wine and hardening cider, but nothing came up. There was no note, no evidence of where you had gone to, or why.
“That smell is just the workshop,” my wife hissed late at night, when I told her you had gone. “It isn’t her at all. If I’d never met the lady myself, I wouldn’t believe you she existed.”
Oh, she is a harsh, unattractive woman; but she has been kind to me, and understanding of the relationship you and I had together; as I have always been of hers with the kitchen boy. But now I am worried. She and I have not kissed or touched in years, and I have no other whims; you are the wine glass among the beer mugs, my dainty martini every night at midnight, and I care not for any red or white wines or burgundys. I worry about the last time I saw you, the lines on your face, the swelling in your stomach that was like a fruit ripening on the vine. Did you fall from the tree? Did you roll away from the embarassment, thinking that I would toss you away, my rotten apple?
I spend my nights in the apple orchards, among your favorite granny smiths, and prepare a bed on which to sleep, with a canopy above, and I wait. Especially here, I can smell you; sharp apple and a sprinkle of pear, everywhere except in my arms.
The rock is cold under my back and hands; for awhile the cold is nice, because outside the heat is extreme. I can feel Josh next to me, his warmth radiating. Our breathing echoes against the walls, which feel close enough to suffocate us here, in this crevice far beneath old lava flows. I know that if the dark weren’t so pitch, I would see my breath in the air. It’s not a dry cold which we experience so much in Idaho, but a wet one—my very lips are moist in this place. The ground is scattered with unforgiving sharp rocks. I fell on my way in and can feel the scrape across my knee and another on my palm. We have flashlights, but we refuse to use them; the dark is too embracing, too real to interrupt.
This is a place of solitude and meditation, a place where a person could really go crazy if they were down here for too long. I wave my hand in front of my face, and after a while, I believe I can really see it. Josh can’t see anything, he says, he doesn’t know what I’m talking about. Maybe I’d be the first to lose my sanity.
The other day, my cousin Brady asked my aunt how old she is.
“Women don’t like it when you ask that,” she or Geoffrey told him.
“Why?” He asked.
“Because women like to think they look younger than they are,” Geoffrey explained.
“Mom,” Brady said, looking at my aunt, “You look like you’re eleven.”
“Not that young!” Geoffrey corrected.
“Fine, fourteen then.”