Sunday Evening Breaks and Tea Lovers
Copyright © 2013 Elizabeth Allers. All rights reserved.
I'm 22 and obsessed with the words.
lying at the top of the Jes, lights flashing neon pink and yellow on the walls, the techno weird Sleepyhead playing far past midnight. laughing.
the feeling of watching C crumble in front of me, knowing I wasn’t her best friend or even a friend at all but in that moment she needed me (specfically me) so desperately. her silver dress from the formal hung on the back of her closet. she had a cactus. and then a drunk call from her months later, out of anger at a boy who was hurting me, because now our gossamer threads were tangled and she couldn’t help but also feel my pain. my apartment had no electricity that day.
I don’t think it’s very often that one meets a legend. I don’t mean a celebrity; I mean someone who is universally feared, celebrated, admired, and loved by everyone they encounter. Someone whose reputation precedes him and with whom there are no “ordinary” moments, and anyone who knows him will say “Oh, of course I knew him! This one time….” before leading into an immediate anecdote (which may have been/is probably exaggerated the more it’s told).
Sometimes October is gray (like today, on this October evening) and the sky and the river and the bark on our willow tree all have leaked their colors out.
Everything is slow today - the heron’s flying slowly across the silver river, the willow is shedding her precious fragile leaves slowly, the rain is falling so slowly that it might not be there at all. I am allowed to be still tonight.
But even as October is crumbling slowly as I watch, it is beautiful, and the leaves are trembling and so am I, and my hair has soaked up the rain and I could think forever about that river and all the people who should be watching it with me, and the windows on the other banks that begin to glow are reminding me that soon October will even have lost her light, and everything is changing but I am allowed to be a human and to be part of this autumn and to feel nostalgic for all the honesty we misplaced in July and to breathe the same wind that the heron feels and that is the most beautiful thing that could ever happen to a girl.
Will loved his Maud, and every breath sounded like the syllables of her name. They could not clasp fingers long enough to know,
long enough to know if they could move in rhythm, long enough to know if the country could fall away except for their patch of grass, long enough to know if there was a dance in the midst of the gunshots.
They could not see the same skyline. She could not love him.
But she could give him twelve lifetimes of songs sent out over the world beyond his isle, and somehow that was enough for him.
I thought, my dear, that was how you loved me. Because that was how I loved you, and I never wanted to hold your hand in mine forever.
This had always been enough.