Friday, January 13, 2012

The first time we met, we didn't fall in love.

We should have, though. The ingredients were all there. Unexpected snowfall, unexpected snow man, fun and laughing and booze and strangers. If you were going to write a love story, that would be a good place to start. I still don't even remember you being there, not consciously, but somehow still after the third time we met, early in the hours of my birthday, every cell in my body answered as soon as you said, "I don't know if you remember..." As though that night was secretly etched somewhere even I can't reach.

I've been saving that story, a little poem in my head about the best time to tell it. Happier times, not these sad smashed ones. The second time we met, we didn't fall in love. The third time, maybe one of us did. For a while, I couldn't imagine a world in which this story wasn't the story of both of us. I still can't, although I suppose that will change over time. Everything always does.

In French there is the phrase "chercher des chichis", the feeling of which is essentially "looking for unnecessary complications in something". This is usually my worst habit, breaking the things that don't need to be broken just for the sake of smashing. I haven't yet found the words for the opposite thing, although I am familiar with the feeling of it. Hope is the hardest thing to outgrow, and maybe the saddest thing with wings.

So I guess the third rule of fairytales is that some brambles are too thick for crossing and too big to go around, and the only option is to find a new path and start a new story. Still I have all these love letters, stacked unwritten in my fingers, waiting to be pierced by these thorns and hang there to dampen in the wind and the rain. I'm not ready to leave this path yet, to stop looking for a way through this thicket. To have crossed this swamp in vain.

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