Saturday, June 14, 2008

SS: Letter to an Unrequited Love

I dreamed we were driving at night, slithering along a two-lane highway in the desert, somewhere outside of Phoenix. You were looking at the shadowy skeletons of the ancient saguaros. It was like Mars for you, this strange world of red and silence, so different from your tiny, cold Atlantic birthplace. I wanted at all times to be in this car with you, our lungs pushing out and breathing in the same air, creating every element between us, so that it swirled around the car and mingled, so that eventually everything else in this little pocket would be us.

You spied an oasis, a desert lake that looked like an ice rink in the dark, with its pale moonlight reflection. We stopped the car and got out, and the air between us slipped out, moving like an invisible inchworm up into the sky. You walked toward the lake. I fell behind you, and quickly lost sight of you. Then I came to the edge of the bank and saw you there, crouched like a diver. Your hands penetrated the surface and slowly you eased in, like a train nosing its way off a track on a bridge. It was a silent dive – it was so natural for you to become one with the water. You slid and melted into it. I tried to follow, but the surface was really ice, and I was broken.

I knew at that point that this was how it was…you living under, me above. I stayed awhile at that bank. I touched the gleaming surface, praying that the melted water on my fingertips still held something of you…”just an atom or two is enough.” And then I walked back to the car and started the engine. I had to keep going.

© Sarah Stanfield, June 14, 2007

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