Monday, April 11, 2011

An Open Letter

There are certain things that I remember most.

 The scratch of your stubble always reminded me of how we were really real. Some days I'd wonder if I was victim of some elaborate fantasy of my own making, but when I reached up you were there and the roughness under my fingertips felt a little bit like home.

There's a particular shade of red; the color of your couch. I don't see it often, but when I do it means summer and sunlight and an inability to be near each other without touching.

I remember low ceilings like a womb. We'd be raised up under them, cocooned in blankets with pale stucco hovering over us. I remember in particular how you always made me switch sides in your parents' loft because you were afraid I'd fall out of bed. Your dad built that loft; I could never look at his hands without also thinking of the bed we shared.

I should say something of your parents. The first time I met them, it was like I'd always been there. Your dad hugged me like I was coming home. Your mom made me tea. It was easy to see you in them- the basic love that went into everything.

There are other things that are not so easy to remember. These things are not as fleeting. They take effort and willingness to recall; they take effort and willingness to dispel.

You had this way of detaching, like what was happening didn't matter. You didn't always do it; mostly you were present and willing and I loved you for that. But more and more toward the end there would be this elsewhereness in your eyes, this way of putting up a wall when I needed you most not to have one.

There was a basicness to the things you did. You would wipe the sand from my back at the beach, or pull the blanket over my cold feet at the movies in Brooklyn. Without my saying anything, you would put your hand in mine as we drifted off to sleep or on my chest as we lay with our heartbeats slowing. You knew somehow, and there was a tenderness there I have not felt before or since.

I would often watch you at simple tasks: washing dishes, cooking breakfast, driving, and I would feel that I would never tired of it. I never did; I loved seeing my plates in your soapy hands and hearing your typing from the other side of the room. I loved the every day of it all. I loved every day.

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