Bent Words

Bent Words

June 18, 2014

Is it that you follow me or I follow you?

Do I even have an ounce of control how the story goes when Iím dreaming?

I saw you vividly, entirely, head to toe and all around. The humidity clinging to the dirt and oil on the concrete floor, making it slippery and old smelling like a dank dungeon. The motor sitting in front of you, massive and stubborn, as you attempt to turn a wrench on it. Five or six strangers huddle around you, young punks or old drunks who could not do what you do but thatís about all you can get in your employ these days with the unaccommodating pay of a motorcycle shop.

They all turn to look at me as I watch silently. All of them but you. Instead you glance for an instant from the corner of your eye, the glow of surprise hidden by your concentration on the task at hand. I try to walk away, turning with purpose but pausing to catch your glance over my shoulder because I simply must know youíre paying attention Ė even if momentarily.

And I do not recall if itís that you follow me or I follow you but somehow we end up together, standing face to face, resisting the urge to reach out for as long as it is possible. It seems like forever but itís only slight delay before we embrace with our whole beings, eagerly recalling each otherís touch though itís been years since weíve even mingled. It doesnít matter, the years and how theyíve affected us, the distance that has pulled us so thoroughly apart, the separate paths weíve so willingly taken or the fact that we arenít supposed to be here Ė somehow it doesnít matter in the mix of scent and touch and eventually taste.

Another kiss could not exist for the perfection of our pairing.

I touch skin and you touch skin and I breathe it all in like it was yesterday; the soap and the heat and the metallic smell of tools make me dizzy with remembrance. How can it be so clear? How can it be so real?

All at once youíre on my couch on North Street. Shirtless though nothing more has happened. You ask me for another shirt and I retreat to my dresser drawers to pull out a blue and yellow SuperBikers2 top, the first they ever made, and toss it in your direction. It means less to me in dreaming than it does to me in recollection for none of that exists anymore for me to dwell upon. But all this I see as vividly as reality.

The interruption of a co-worker surprises us, but only enough to separate us, not enough for us to feel any sort of guilt for the brief engagement we held. You mouth the words to me that itís okay and slowly step outside my door. My life outside that apartment is my current life Ė bright and full of a midday sun Ė and I retreat back in time to my baby girl with her arms outstretched toward me and Kevin, smiling, standing in the parking lot of the shop.

You seem to vanish with the open air, taking with you the shirt I and all the passion that we once shared.

I feel grateful for the visit, a rush of heat from the memory, but thereís nothing like my kiddo reaching up for me and only me in the madness of our every day, bringing me back to reality.

Written at 6:06 a.m.