Suddenly, optimistically, I plow through spinning thoughts and clench the excitement permeating through my hot skin and jump down off the ledge of the front steps of my house down to where you stand next to the flowering gardenia bush. You draw near to show me a flower, and I inhale the blossom’s scent mixed with your own delight. I linger. You probably notice. you say something about loving flowers and I say something like I know. We’re trying to have a conversation but our bodies’ are shouting for each other so loudly, we can’t really hear the words coming out of our voices.
You hand me the flower from my own yard and I thank you. You smile and walk back to the car where you are about to step in and drive away. But you linger. And I again lean in. You fiddle with your hair and tell me you’ve decided not to cut it. I say I’m happy because I think it is beautiful as it is. You tell me you just need to take care of it, and tell me to feel the ends; how brittle they are. I hold a bunch of your sun-kissed hair in my hands and feel the brittleness, but am not focused on this. I’m focused on my beating heart. I’m focused on the rush of warm blood filling in my cheeks. I’m focused on your perfumed scent, your dark eyes. I’m focused on the constellation of moles along the left side of your nose. I’m focused on this moment knowing its all I’ll get before you enter that truck and drive away.
You step inside, and I close the door for you. Our friend steps into the driver’s seat as our lingering was supported by our waiting for her. The truck reverses and I’m left alone with a lingering scent and an attraction I’m trying so hard to bury and pretend it doesn’t exist because I’m afraid. I’m afraid what it will do, that this life I’ve worked so hard to control will come crumbling apart. I linger in the driveway. As you disappear from sight I linger in my thoughts of you. I linger in the breadths of time now stretching between us. I linger in the passion coursing through my body now settling like the moments after a passing storm.
I strap on my shoes and do the only thing I can imagine doing. I run, hoping that all I felt will seize to exist while at the same time yearning for more and more, like my life woke up and seized me by the shoulders shaking me shouting: carpe amorem!