On the way to work this morning, the i-pod coughed up more than a song. Memories of dawn and a love long lost before I ever found it...Kiss me
Out of the bearded barley
Nightly, beside the green, green grass
Swing, swing, swing the spinning step
You wear those shoes and I will wear that dress.
I fell in love for the first time, to an epiphany - if I had been more imaginative then I would have heard music - when I was eighteen but I didn't realise it until much later. Had it not been for strong breeze - a rarity in desert August - and the goose pumps forming needle points that the breeze bored into, I would not have realised it. It singled out one amongst a hundred in that class. After class, I searched for the boy with the brown backpack in vain. For dear reader, I had not glimpsed his face. We met later, and became good friends.
I did everything right. I had butterflies in my stomach when I talked to him. I blushed to the roots of my hair at the very mention of his name. I never gathered the nerve to ask him out to coffee. I read the books he read, sometimes, and felt glad when we saw the same things. I loved in silence, by the side-walk. When I passed his room, I would turn involuntarily to see if I could catch a glimpse of him. One part of me found this cowardly, and I forced myself to take another road to the institute building. His words were music to my ears. After conversations, I would meticulously go through every word I had uttered and slap my head in frustration when I thought I had said something foolish. I did not yearn for duets in the Alps, candle light dinners, till-death-do-us-part. I sometimes wanted conversation but I religiously avoided him. There have been times, when I would see him at the other end of a long corridor and I would duck and change my route. Once, only once, we had coffee together, when the winter was melting into rare spring. There were flowers everywhere. We sat at Sky Lawns, underneath a canopy and idly talked. I don't remember what. It must have been about books. I wore a cream cardigan. I reached for my purse to pay. But he paid, reminding me that I owed him a coffee. I still owe him. I never broke bread with him. We wrote to each other often, about this and that, books and life, I think. His name in my inbox, shining new, like an unopened gift, would strike delight at the very roots of my heart.
Oh, kiss me beneath the milky twilight
Lead me out on the moonlit floor
Lift your open hand
Strike up the band and make the fireflies dance
Silver moon's sparkling
Music was entwined inextricably with moments, words gathered more meaning than they should have. Reader, I did not not know his handwriting, his favourite shirt, how he looked when he got wet in the rain. I never played a game with him. I never saw his anger or his angst. Did he change his socks everyday? None of that seemed to matter. I felt a fondness that attraction drew into love. I was so secure, that I never felt a tinge of jealousy, for I had no want. I did not mind that it was not reciprocated. I was not even curious to find out. I felt a fascination, almost as if I had created him. I loved just the idea of him. Sometimes during a winter morning jog, when this song would come up on my walkman, not by design, I would slow down to a trot, my breath heavy, and think of him. There may have been a hint of a smile, lost in the swirl of the fog. It is only then, that I wished that the fog would lift and I would run into him accidentally, that it was all real. It was a reluctant thought, peeping out from a corner, that I had never known existed. It was my desperate plea for nothing and it stayed that way.
So kiss me
Kiss me down by the broken tree house
Swing me upon its hanging tire
Bring, bring, bring your flowered hat
We'll take the trail marked on your father's map