Little Old Love Story - Girl of Cardigan

I’ve been Kon Mari-ing our home, which involves, for me, endless pages of old notebooks, bits of binder paper tucked into corners, and reading a thousand discarded stories and bits of writing.  For your late summer nights, here’s a little creative writing something I found in the archives – old, but too sweet to leave in a box forever.  

We held hands all the way home.

There was a sunrise, once when I was young-flailing and sure of nothing, that began with fogged windows in a borrowed car.  The sun rose, and we gathered ourselves and the scattered pieces of hope and failure, removed our bodies from their newest and only proximity, stole one last glance from angles we would never revisit, and drove with our faces to the rising and our backs to the ocean and the last time I knew what I wanted.  And all the way home, you were holding my hand.

Before sunrise, there were your lips on my fingers, sure and cautious as you put down your guitar and picked my heart up in its place.  Kissing you was my boldest only, the first and last time I moved to claim someone without thinking, still the loudest sound I have ever made.  I kissed you with all the years before and after wrapped up in one swift motion.  I kissed you, and I marveled for minutes, or hours, or perhaps I am marveling still at the ease of it – how teeth and tongues and lips moved in tandem, with purpose and an intimacy that defied and defined the way I knew and didn’t know you at all.  I kissed you, you kissed me, I only ever kissed you, but I left you with something I’ve never quite reclaimed.  And the sun rose, and we gathered up pieces, and you held my hand all the way home.

We wandered the beach, silent and full of our private purgatory, and we had lost each other already only inches but ages away.  Your head in my hands on the sand and the stars were ours only, and I might have stayed there in the sound of your voice and the waves, but we shivered and pulled each other back to a stolen car with windows for fogging and that damned guitar. I kissed you like shouting, we marveled and moved, and the sun came up and your hand was in mine.

I climbed into the passenger seat on a stolen night long after our promises were sleeping, all effort and nerves and without a plan beyond just being near you and breathing you in.  We drove over the mountain as you played me the longest, saddest list of broken heart songs, already mourning, or pretending to mourn.  We were children who needed, we were ancients who longed, and we drove through the darkness humming and stuck in a day by the river, your arm on my waist and the way time bent in on itself when you looked in my eyes.  We drove and we mourned and we needed until we reached the water, your head in my hands in the sand, and I kissed you, the sun rose and you held my hand all the way home.

You asked me, as you kissed me goodbye, as your hand left mine, if I thought this was the last time.

I didn’t know then.  I have never known.

Girl of Cardigan

  • Janice Christman August 15, 2016 at 6:24 pm

    Oh, my dear girl, I cried as I read this….I have felt this, too….