Your eyes meet mine. My forehead clenches, and I get lost, mesmerised by the many words they imply but are left unsaid. My eyes meet yours. They are solemn, sincere for their part, dignified for its talk, but inscrutable as they appear impassioned.
Your eyes meet mine, but they avert, and I know not why. Has someone else caught your eye? These frowns of confusion crease the very seams of my head. These hands that caress shake perpetually, not knowing the reason for its instability. You recoil at my touch, like a delicate bubble that’s colliding with a finger, barely managing not to burst. Your shivers indicate horror at these very hands that caressed you endlessly.
My eyes meet yours. They used to smile at me, and I wonder what I did wrong, who I burned. What horrors did I commit to deserve this strange nonchalant nod that doesn’t acknowledge what we’ve done together? All I get now are questions left unvoiced. Doubts wriggle within me, burning deep within my chest, gnawing the insides of my brain, suffusing every uttered word with a sense of forlorn melancholy. My voice, a monologue, follows a steady rhythm, almost mathematically calculative, a rumble of tongs on rock.
Your eyes meet mine. I hold my arm out. You used to come to me, place your own hand with mine. I used to grasp yours and give you a squeeze and you would churn yours indicating an assent of trust. The metal in your hands jingled. We walked together, ran together, rode together, our conversations sometimes bordering on the philosophical to devolving into mere squeals and grunts.
Our eyes meet one another’s. The lines of my eyeglasses hinder a portion of my vision, but I do not avert my eyes. Your jaws clenched, you fight hard to ignore the sense of familiarity that precedes our gaze. Your breathing becomes quicker, for I always notice the lock of hair that goes over your ears when you’re beginning to heave. These fingers want to correct it but they don’t. These hands wish to clear everything in your path but they don’t. These eyes wish to become blind to the rest of the world as long as they’re lost in your gaze.
Don’t you remember you were my bedrock for everything in the world? The reason I rode, the reason I ate, the reason I left, the reason I returned. Wrought and cleaned, bent and bruised, dead or alive, I always returned for you.
I look down, at my frayed hands. They look aged and brown, with many calluses from the exposure to air for long periods of time. It is night. Thoughts weigh heavy upon my head. Shadows disappear as darkness engulfs the very road I walk upon. The wind whooshes above my head, the air cutting through my face like a thousand tiny shards hurled at me. I reel and open my mouth, unable to withstand the barrage, as my teeth chatter. A chill runs deep down the spine and I feel goosebumps emerge from beneath my clothes.
Our eyes meet one another’s. You seem to take in the cold with ease. Do you remember the day when I held my hand around a wooden pot on a fire? Because I couldn’t withstand the temperature after riding many hours on a cold winter’s night. We sat together for hours, you dozing in between while my eyes just couldn’t close. I teased you about your thick skin which can find comfort and ease in any circumstance.
It’s strange how things change. Weird how the same words uttered change in meaning. How meaning acquires a different dimension. How the intricate seams of your nerves are taut with tension, your eyes constricting where they once used to show regard.
I wish to see who you are again. For you are not the same person I knew. Not the same soul I connected with. These embers are burning out, like the seamless spark of a woman’s eyes that dims with each passing day. The glint in the eye that fades when the many doors of the mind close to the idea of what you were.
Strangers were we and strangers we’ve become. Standing at crossroads looking at the many roads that lead to diverging paths. I don’t know where to go. I don’t know where to place my foot. I am here. I stand alone. Will you be here once again?
Musings of my observations from a cafe.