True Love Always

I slam on my brakes when I see you clear as day in the midst of a crowd on a bright, sun-drenched morning.

The car behind me honks long and loud as I sit, stunned and wondering where you’ve come from.

Front tire over yellow curb, I leave my car running in park and run to catch up, calling your name. Around a corner, I almost lose sight of you as I move through a sea of people in slow motion frenzy, trying to reach you.

At the bus stop, you pause and look at your watch then sit down on a bench I can’t see, although I know its location on this familiar street by heart.

Gasping for breath, I find myself behind you, hand outstretched, almost touching your hair. What stops me? It’s the sound of your voice, talking into a cell phone. The shape of your hand and wrist. The tiny birthmark that isn’t there.

Then you turn and smile and I see your profile and it really isn’t you at all but someone else with just your shade and texture of hair. Someone tall and straight with the same loose-limbed walk, wearing jeans that might have been yours and a t-shirt soft and worn in exactly the same shade of faded blue in which I buried you.

And I wanted it to be you more than anything. I want to go open the ground and check to see if you’re really there where you can’t be because you’re so alive inside of me that it’s impossible to believe you’ve gone.

I close my eyes and open them again, hoping to see that it’s you in front of me, but it’s not.

Back down the crowded sidewalk, I work my way back to my car, pull the ticket from the windshield, and drop it on the dashboard without reading it.

On autopilot, I drive familiar roads unseen and end up at the cemetery, not knowing how I got there.

There’s a patch of brown earth in the middle of green. The sight of the soil hurts me. I can barely breathe. You can’t possibly be down there when I’m up here. And I just want to find my way back to you.

I remember your bare feet, the frayed end of your jeans, the letter I slipped into your pocket that said I love you forever and ever. The one you never read because your eyes were dead.

And I can’t tell you everything I didn’t say before. I want to follow you, to be with you, to never ever leave you, but I can’t, not yet. You’d kill me for even thinking of it.

But I don’t know how to be in the world without you and it hurts.

Long moments pass on the dirt by the grass and the sun shifts in the sky and I grow quiet inside thinking of you. You once carved our initials in a picnic table top: you plus me equals true love always, and I laughed and teased you because it was so cliché. But now I want to do it too. With my finger in the dirt that covers you, I draw a heart and put us inside it.

I know it won’t last. The rain will wash it away or someone will scuff it with their foot but that’s okay.

Maybe I’ll grow old while you dance on the other side of forever but I’ll never stop loving you and I will miss you always and forever, even as I let you go.

©Unequivocal Kate, 2010

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    About Me

    I love laughter, wickedness, fearlessness, irreverence, and kindness. I love road trips where I can prop my bare feet up on the dashboard. I love the feel of sunshine warm against my bare skin, the smell of the mountains and the roar of the ocean. I love to read. I love to challenge conventional thinking. I'm a huge fan of spirituality but have little tolerance for religion. I love to talk faith and philosophy. I love children. I get bored far too easily. I love debate and people who don't try too hard. I love it when people aren't afraid to disagree with me and know why they believe what they believe.

    Music

    Things that sound like music to me: rain on a tin roof, the trill of birds first thing in the morning, the coo and gurgle of happy babies, the beat of African drums, the roar of the ocean as the tide ebbs and flows, the sound of a rushing river, unrestrained laughter, the wind moving through leaves, the tick-tock of my grandma's old clock, the crash of thunder, a quiet whisper in my ear, the contented purr of a cat, the musical ting ting of wind chimes, children laughing, the sizzle sizzle sound of something yummy cooking, and the rustle of dry leaves under my feet.

    I also enjoy many musicians and bands including: Ray LaMontagne, Jason Mraz, The Black Eyed Peas, John Mayer, James Carrington, CCR, REM. My favorite genre is acoustic folk/rock.

    Favorite Quotes

    "We are what we repeatedly do; excellence, then, is not an act but a habit." —Aristotle

    "The most authentic thing about us is our capacity to create, to overcome, to endure, to transform, to love and to be greater than our suffering." - Ben Okri

    "What we think, or what we know, or what we believe is, in the end, of little consequence. The only consequence is what we do."—John Ruskin