"I don't know how to be a person around you." Ten words, but the bullet of them felt like ten minutes of uninterrupted truth. He didn’t even look at me when he said them, which revealed that no ten words could be truer. He was practicing his truth on the spot.
It's been so much time since so little time.
All I could say was that I miss him.
No three words could be truer, at least not now.
My own response revealed the third and final truth:
That he had indeed been a person.
I am not a perfect woman, but one thing I can own is the ability
to create a space for people to be people.
He had been a person, for so little time.
Perhaps he'd never felt like one before. Perhaps the reality
of being within his own skin for someone else to see was ultimately the kicker.
He saw himself for who he was, for what I saw and longed to keep, and he didn't know how to be a person anymore.
He had been a person, even if for so little time.
If he hadn't there'd have been nothing for me to miss to begin with.
Sunday, March 11, 2018
Drip goes the water down the ridge outside my window and into the crevice of the seal below a perched piece of glass I slid upwards just to hear the cry of rain. Los Angeles does not cry often. She doesn’t believe in it.
Those who live within the figurative sense of Hollywood replicate this trait of her’s, except they believe that tears are a sign of weakness. She just believes in the goodness of her warm front — which is, perhaps, what really keeps the people coming.
I live within a space of four rooms clustered together without doors to separate them. If I could peer at this place from above, I imagine it would look like a puddle with fragments and memorabilia of my short life hung crookedly on white walls, and disbursed in stacks on the floor, or placed in pitchers of water with dreary flowers fading fast with time.
My favorite room is the main room, especially at three o’clock when the sun is at the laziest, most romantic part of its day, and it begins to fall deeply in love with the ocean, so it casts itself out in full display for all to see before sinking beyond the horizon.
Yesterday, Los Angeles cried, and with her tears she purified everything around her.
You exist somewhere by the beach, and I find myself often wondering about your life. Yesterday morning, while tucked within a coffee shop, I saw a familiar face and he saw me in return. I wondered if he’d say something about me to you: about the girl whose name you’ve said only once. Who are you? You’d asked. Which seems like such a simple question; and is so common that we feel a name is all that suffices. I hear the question, who are you? and I am reminded that not even a lifetime can answer in full.
Who are you? is what I should have asked in return, from the backseat, with the window rolled down and you leaning close by on the curb. But when I ask the question, I don’t want just a name. I want the whole story.
They call you controversial, which is an indication of character that should not be overlooked, and yet my mind wanders to uncharted territory of what if, and maybe.
You once said that you have faith that kicks and screams, and you took the words out of my mouth; and on a street corner in Santa Monica I took three steps back into the late hour, back into my solitude, with screaming thoughts that rode the whole of the way home with me, fast on the 10 and right into sleep.
It rained yesterday. Los Angeles was crying. And yours is a face I thought I saw in a crowded space, but found myself too thrown off to peer beyond the pages of my book.
This large city has pockets of spaces that shrink it down and collide our paths.
We have had only one collision, but it was so brief that you only skimmed the surface of my name.
It rained in Los Angeles yesterday, purifying the grass beneath my feet, washing the filth down the drain, making way for this morning. For a familiar face. To ask a question. Who are you?
I have an entire lifetime to share.
And suddenly I find all of my thoughts at the shore. Where the ocean tide rises and declines in a daily rhythm. I think of overcast skies, of the light of cast out sun beams. I disregard the smallness of the daily problems I find myself within at present, because somewhere beyond this chaos is a peace, and in that peace is a piece of a life I am holding fast in hope for.
There is a home in a place I can’t yet name, but I am on my way there. Each day. When I arrive is another question, but I am heading home now in all of this rain, in the goodness that it continues to relinquish.
An entire lifetime, beyond four rooms clustered together, in spite of this chaos, and the isolation of a crowd that cannot know me full well.
I will wait for the familiar face to seek my own familiarity. To call me home. To name a place. To stand in the storm with me, and revel in the sun.
I keep the window perched open. I let the story in. As it will.