shared breaths with the one who is nothing more than a dreamPosted: August 10, 2010
There are so many things that I should do as we sit across from each other, watching each other breathe.
I’ll try to keep my mind in check as I field every possible way you could crush my spirits for the thousandth time. As we are, separated physically by nothing more than a slab of wood and two clear vessels forming condensation rings at their base, our minds are embarrassingly out of sync. I’ll dangle a phrase in front of you, a play upon words that I hope only you catch that surreptitiously explains how I feel. I dare not be overt with you, for fear of what could fall, an angry despair, a bridge burnt by my own naivete. The sacrifice might be too great for me to bear, and I’m too much of a coward to take the leap. I’d take in a breath that stretches my diaphragm, but it’d be waste.
I’ll instead watch the way your mouth moves for every syllable, forming words and sentences that I follow with a fascination that I can’t quite explain. A vain hope, that you’ll become someone that I can be with not only in my sleep, is the only thing that provides any sort of motivation. I won’t remember what you say, I seldom do, but I’ll remember the way your eyes widen, your nose scrunches, or your smile brightens whenever I say something right. I’ll keep talking and note the way your face darkens to a shade past midnight and you glare at me with that incredulous stare whenever I trip over an anecdote or bring up what is best left burrowed under layers of dirt. I’ll have little more than these memories to show for those moments upon agonizing moments when I fought the urge to part your lips, taking in that warm breath your lungs left with barely a tremble.
I’ll curse the moment when I first realized your beauty, that dark September night when you first said my name. When the space normally reserved for a you was filled with the letters that my identity has been bestowed. The air was damp and your eyes were bright, filled with an electricity that could kill if it weren’t for the grounding influence beneath our feet. You smiled and I didn’t say a word, instead I watched the folds of your dress settle gracefully on your figure, whetting an appetite that will never be addressed. The light reflected just so that night, and I’ll realize that you’re wearing the exact same dress, while watching your chest rise in conjunction with a passing breath.
I’ll kick myself for realizing that my gaze lingers for ten seconds longer than it should, never knowing if you notice the wanton glances that I unintentionally float your way. I’ll dissect every moment we share, combing through them to find instances where it seems you feel the same way knowing full well that the truth may never escape the fog of childish remarks and uneasy silences. Is it my fear of consequence that places such an ungainly barrier between us or am I right in assuming that the only reason we were ever placed in the same room together is a cruel joke being played by those who’ve known us through all of our past lives, their laughter disguised as the atmosphere’s barely exhaled sighs.
If I were a braver man, I’d pour out my heart into the glass cup placed in front of you and watch as my efforts slowly go flat when you decline my invitation to take a sip. The aroma of my longing would weave itself with that of your perfume and I already know you’d do nothing to acknowledge it. For a moment, though, I would entertain the thought of a sweet taste enveloping your mouth, the taste of my affection, and you smiling after inhaling that first sip.