blue butterfly – the story of us

Standard

The first day I met him, he was

in my coffee shop on the corner

of St. George’s street.

 

It was Friday, at just gone 4pm

and I was drying latte glasses

putting them back on the shelf.

 

He could have gone

to McDonalds across the road for

‘Caution: Extra Hot’ coffee,

but he didn’t seem like the kind of

extra this or that guy.

 

The rain came down

like shards of fine, broken up,

smooth by the time it hit the ground.

Rain always made me want to dance,

but I had other glass to clean.

 

It spotted his grey zip up,

with a hood he never took shelter in.

The ends of his long hair,

rat like and straight

down his back.

 

Hands dug deeply

into his pockets, he ordered a

‘Coffee’

I asked, ‘what kind?’

And he shrugged.

Most people ask for

A skinny shot extra hot combination

lock to unlock their tired eyes

and mac computers sitting hunched,

so over, hung, over,

one by one like single strands of unnumbered days,

wired up to their life support

with spaghetti strap beat makers.

Click

But he just looked at me

With his brown eyes

Like he just needed something,

And so I poured him a coffee.

 

I made him my favourite.

A caramel macchiato,

Sweet and to the point.

He paid in silvers and sat

at the window

counting the droplets on

the smeared window pane.

 

He even took out a notebook

and pen, a walking cliché

except for his hair.

His hair, I liked.

 

I served a trickle of other

non-people, and eventually forgot

all about him

sitting in the corner of my coffee shop, half hidden by

A peace lily

until just before closing when I had finished cleaning

the glass. He got up and returned his cup.

‘Thank you.’

And I watched him go, reaching

for the handle.

‘Hey,’ I called after him.

He turned, biting his lip gently.

‘Got time for another?’

He shuffled, momentarily.

‘On the house.’

With a smile, he sat

at the bar, I placed down the last glass

on my shelf, fresh and warm from the dishwasher.

 

We laughed and talked

about our pasts, our backgrounds

in music. I thought about how I would find

the words to write all of this down.

‘Aren’t we just a pair of clichés?’ I laughed.

He shook his head, sliding over a piece

of paper

of his heart

with his name and number

tattooed onto: our fingertips touched.

‘Stories always have to begin somewhere.’

 

He showed me the West End.

We walked, arms linked, side by side, together, smiling

up at the lights, darting between

the dark clouds spitting

into our eyes.

‘Somehow, it’s always raining,’ I mused,

thinking about other places

he might take me.

 

We hop-scotched

shots of single malt

our expensive taste

of what was not

us,

smoke and mirrors,

fake names, dinner and a show.

We skipped the show

to walk along the thames,

dropping pencil to paper scratched

dreams and fears

into: the current.

 

We watched them float

away, holding the idea

of them in our mouths, the same warm taste

of the day we’d had. And even then

I missed him. I missed the way he didn’t

even need to look at me before

his hand held mine. I knew then.

I knew I wanted to tell him

what was written on my

float away dream.

How I’d found the words

to write and tell, how all of this began.

 

In the sea air, I breathe

him in, and feel

the weight clasping against my back

bone. The shore whispers,

“he’s gone, he’s gone, he’s gone,”

and I throw stones to silence

them, until my arm aches.

 

First was his throat,

sore, and with the occasional tissue,

covered in blood. His light,

The second, when he could not express

his need for solace

in the dim darkness

of his bedroom,

where the curtains hung limp

like peeled skin.

 

I just lay beside him,

my arms wrapped around

and entwined my fingers in his silky hair.

But that was just. It.

The third.

I knew then, the moment

the first strand came apart, still laced

through my fingertips.

I knew then how he would leave me.

And how the day I met him

could never be described as a tragedy

and how it could never be a loss,

because from him, I had gained more

than a life, more

than his heart, more

than just another cup of coffee.

This time I didn’t need to find the words.

And neither could he.

‘Our lives in turn will always become great stories; it’s just finding the person to pass it on that matters.’

 

The sea never gave me any comfort.

Not before today.

But somehow it tells me,

with the gentle to and fro of the tide,

that nothing in this world will ever really leave us,

and if it does, it will always come back,

one way or another.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s