September 22, 2010


Posted in Foolish Things at 9:30 am by Alix

“Do you love me?” she says, and the beautiful tension between you two snaps.

You’re not sure what that lilt in her voice means. It would be flirtatious, but her deep brown eyes are too sharp.

(Her everything is too sharp, too in-focus, as if she is the only real thing in the room.)

She coughs, and you realize you haven’t yet given her an answer. “Do you love me?” she says, and you startle at her husky alto. She’d been a soprano earlier.

She bats ice-blue eyes at you.

You don’t know what to say. You almost want to run, but it’s almost like there’s nowhere to run to.

(There’s not. There’s nothing else here right now.)

Thick, callused fingers, so unlike the fine ones you’d held for the dance, tilt your chin. “Well?” he asks, and he looks uncannily like the boy who sat behind you in your senior year, except his skin is already darkening and one eye is changing color again.

The person in front of you waits, shifting through all manner of skin tones, eye colors, body shapes, hairstyles, gender expressions, acting like you have all the time in the world.

(You do. You just don’t know it.)

Eventually, the shifting will stop, and the person you had been dancing with will look at you with your own eyes, and smile at you, and say, “You don’t understand the question.”

And you will sound sad when you say it.