I met Dave when I was eighteen. He was the professor for my Romantic Poetry course my freshman year. He read us Baudelaire, his wavy black hair hanging over his brow as he stood at the podium. He was in his mid-thirties and the gray flecks in his hair and the fact that he was older than me was almost more irresistable than the fact that he was my teacher. Forbidden fruit I longed to taste. He had a beautiful voice that traveled the length of each word with such ease, such grace, I couldn’t help but imagine him paying me the same attention someday. When he asked to speak to me after class one day, in my head I thought, finally.
-Veronica, I wanted to talk to you about the comments you made in class yesterday. They were very insightful.
-Thank you, Professor Sutter.
-Call me Dave.
And so began our affair.
We would always meet after his last class on Wednesdays. In hushed whispers in his office, we shared histories and kisses. He asked me about my past relationships and was understanding when I complained that I had never felt appreciated before. Seeing the kind look in his gray eyes, almost like a caress, I thought I finally knew what love was.
For three years we continued this. I moved out of the campus apartment I shared with a friend to another apartment, one closer to where he lived. I longed to live with him, I wished he had never gotten married.
And I think all lovers share this in common – the same wish to be each other’s first everything, to never lose that spark, even after the phosphorescence of love and lust starts to wear off from other’s touches, even though the canvas of our bodies may not be lily-white.
He never spoke much of his wife, only said they were having problems communicating. He said Junior was their one and only shared happiness, that their marriage was approaching its end. It was just a matter of time.
And I nourished my hope on whatever spare amount of time he could come and see me. But crumbs, I soon discovered, only leave you hungry for more.