~ a story ~
There is a little coffee shop by my apartment. I don’t go to it much, but when I do I always see her.
She looks like you.
Not exactly like you, but close. She’s a little older, a little taller, and a bit less cheerful. Still, every time I see her I think of you.
I order my drink, and she gives me a half smile. I pick a spot in a corner, pull out a book I won’t read, and sit. I sip my drink and stare at her. I’m always to her side, out of her eye line.
I like looking at her profile. Her small pointed noise, like yours. Her soft chin, like yours. Her long dark hair, longer than yours actually. She always pulls it back in a tight braid.
Sometimes my mind drifts on the thought of her hair out, brushing her back, flowing about, a cascade of chocolate strands. I imagine my hands in it, my cheek against it, closing my eyes and falling into her hair. Like I did with yours.
I sometimes wonder if she smells like you. Not at the coffee shop; I imagine she smells like the latest hipster brew most days. But when she’s not at the coffee shop, when she’s out living instead of making a living, I wonder what scent sticks to her skin.
Yours was always sweet, a fruity body spray that at once made me smile and gag. You loved that shit, dosing yourself in it every day, but especially when we went out. A cloud of sugary berries surrounded you. To think…there was a time when I was happy to be floating in your cloud.
I don’t think you’d like her. You were always so bubbly, like the world would end if you weren’t cheerful at all times.
She… she’s more real, like life has seen her. Like she knows the good and the bad, the easy with the hard, the sacrifice, the struggle, and yet kept on.
If given the choice, if a magic genie gave me a wish, I’d wish to have known her instead. You were candy; she is sustenance.
As I sit in my corner, sipping my drinking, holding the book I never read, I always wish I had met her first. Because to now meet her, to now know her, is a fool hearted measure.
No matter how much better than you she is, because I know she is, I will always think of your smile, your hair, and your smell. I could never love her, be sustained by her, because you tainted my heart with your sugar coated self.
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