part two from the guy's perspective
My lungs feel heavy against tired ribs as I fail to steady my breath once again.
The mirror is fogged with shower steam and I can just make out my bloodshot eyes, clouded with littered thoughts of you.
You and your creased eyes that glow russet in the summer sun, your dimpled cheeks that make me want to cry with impossible amounts of joy, your lips, so plump and red and delicious that always remind me of cherries; sweet.
In the Winter time I'll wrap my arms around your waist and we'll dance in the infinite darkness wearing matching socks with pom-poms on them that you brought us for Christmas. You'll watch me from across the room with those enchanting eyes, as big as moons from distant galaxies, and beg me to massage your frozen toes. We'll lay in the snow pretending we're on cloud nine and make snow angels until we've giggled so much we can't feel out tongues. Then we'll race inside to jump beneath the shower and create our own steam.
Condensation drips from the oval mirror now, and I can still faintly make out your plump lip marks you left there for me last Spring. She tried to clean them away but I can still make them out, and I'm fine with that, its one of the only things I have left of you.
Apart from your cheery chap stick I keep tucked in my draw, it smells just like you used to in the Summer.
So I hesitantly leave the bathroom, the steam settling, making my skin prickle with beads of moisture. She's probably wondering what I'm up to. But I don't want to leave just yet; it's not safe to think of you anywhere but here.
So I stop in the doorway and remember my 19th birthday and your sneaky ways, like making cupcakes that spelled out our names with hundreds and thousands, your laugh that could be mistaken for a sweet symphony, your jutting hips that bear elephant tattoos and a birth mark shaped like the union jack.
In the Summer time we'll sit under the oak tree and draw smiley faces and kittens on each others backs until the sun disappears behind the moon. Then I'll watch you prance around the lawn in some manic rain dance until you give up and make love to me under the purple umbrella stuck in the ground. You'll attempt to make lemonade from lemons off our neighbour's tree and you'll forget the sugar, again. But I'll hide my sour bitten face and nod with fake delight and you'll beam at me from under thick lashes. I'll sneak out early to cook you breakfast and you'll awake before I can bring it to you in our creaky old bed, so you make the house smell like a Californian coffee shop while I shower with the door open.
The bathroom has emptied of steam and your seal of approval has disappeared off the wet mirror. She's beckoning me with the voice of a siren now and I grudgingly obey the fierce brunette and retire to our bed. Or is it my bed? (I wish it was still our bed). She's waiting atop the duvet she brought a week or so back, you would hate it, and she's wearing lingerie which she calls sexy, and arousing. But when I think of sexy, I think of you and your old holey rugby socks you took from your dad and your black boy short underwear with the rabbit on the bum and the crude tee shirts of mine that I made you wear and you hated it, your locks all tangled in the morning when I wake you with butterfly kisses, your makeup smudged across your rosy cheeks, your hands with the painted red nails that so teasingly dig into my muscular arms.
In the Fall we'll wake up early to clean the yard before our parents arrive for the Sunday lunch you insist of having. You'll pucker your cherry red lips and flutter your un-made eyes until I give in and agree to have the family over. Then we'll go throw the season changed leaves at one another until the rain starts again and turns everything a soggy brown. I'll pick you up from work in our beat up little car and take you out to dinner at the Asian place I know you hate, just to see you smirk at me from behind a flustered face and to have you punch me in the arm weakly. You'll eat your noodles in silence and lock me out of the bathroom at home, ignoring me until I fall to my knees and smother the backs of your tanned thighs with kisses and whisper "I love you" into your towel robe.
I made love to her, but it wasn't really love. I thought of you the whole time as she kissed my neck and shoulders and chest and as she ran her fingertips across my back and nibbled my ears. She doesn't know me like you did. Perhaps you should've drawn up a map before our departure.
I lay there panting and puffing and huffing and my tired eyes droop, forcing me into a dream where I think of you. You and your crazy, mad ideas that always got us into trouble, like when you decided we should 'take' a lamb from the old farm down the road because they had so many and wouldn't mind. And you convinced me with your sugar drop eyes and candy cane smile, then we had a visit from an angry farmer the next morning, your obsessive quirks, like you getting silly about me leaving the Hello Kitty toaster plugged in or the window open on a Summer night because someone might break in, your cute teeth that you bear when you're angry at me or when you smile so stupidly you blush.
In the Spring we'll picnic in the meadow filled with long grass and daffodils, eating strawberries and cream and suck on banana and coffee lollipops and make shapes from fluffy purple clouds as the sun goes down. You'll kiss me on the neck leaving a bite mark to remind me of yourself then make love to me in the grass as the cicadas chirp and the dragonflies drone. You'll leave a lipstick message on the bathroom mirror for me to read when I rise, your perfect lips on the edge of the glass. "Marry Me", your writing scrawled intelligently in passionfruit purple. I'll smile with such knowing that you're completely mine.
I smother my face with my favourite pillow as the sun peaks through the slit in the curtain, and I think about how beautiful the sunrise is and then I think of you. You and all your crystal elegance. The sun tickles my uncovered toes and she's jiggling around on the bed next to me trying to put on pants and shake off pesky flies. I savour the silence for a few more minutes before I grumble with a morning choked voice, "good morning", then I stumble across the room to find my socks.
For what seemed like an eternity, I waited for the jug to boil, it was really only a few minutes. I stared at my favourite mug; the faded blue had gotten even duller. Then she goes and screams my name with her high pitched voice, so intense a dog should be the only one able to hear it. The mug, the one you teased me about mercilessly, dropped to the wooden flooring in surprise. I stared at it blankly, and then quickly ran to the bedroom where she stood at the window piercing the air with that treacherous noise. I didn't have to look to know it was you.
The front door opened with a bang and I stood there clad in my boxers and socks you brought me last Winter, only to see you running down the street, your locks bouncing against the back of your coat. My coat.
I looked down at my hand and the red envelope that had your name on it. Then I yelled your name, so loudly my own ears blocked. But you didn't turn around, you didn't stop running.
The letter caught in the wind and I watched the tiny red piece of paper drift away in the cool breeze. You'll never get my letter.
The letter telling you that I miss the way you run your fingers through my scruffy hair and make jokes about chopping it all off when I'm sleeping. Telling you that I can't stand the way my mother looks at me because of the lack of your eccentric smile and button nose at the dinner table. Telling you that I wish we could just say hello again and exchange a smile that's only made for one another. Telling you that I miss your sneaky kisses on a Sunday morning when I'm pretending to sleep and the sun is playing in your hair. Telling you that I kept your cherry chap stick and the lipstick kisses because I can't stand the thought of erasing the last of you from my life. Telling you that I day dream of meeting you again and marrying you behind a waterfall with hibiscus flowers in your hair, just like you always wanted. Telling you that after all this time, I still fall in love with you 34 million times over. Every. Single. Day.