Thursday, September 1, 2011

On Wednesday

We agreed to meet at Penn Station and take the LIRR to the beach. It was a Wednesday, and I was reveling in my three weeks of vacation. You found me at track 18, and we boarded the train, stealing a row of 3 all for ourselves.

On the ride out you lay with your head in my lap while we talked. I ran my fingers through your hair, my other hand in your pocket. The curve of your hip fit perfectly in my palm: I remember noticing that.

We spread the blanket and towels out, and ate the food we'd brought. While your pita fell apart I rubbed sunscreen into your skin. We lay down, but soon you got up to go in the water and kept asking me to come with you. As you walked away I relaxed into the sound of the waves, the heat of the sun, allowed myself to smile because I was there with you. You made me happy, and it felt good to admit it.

When you came back we lay side my side, usually touching somehow. You read- seeing you propped up with an open book always makes me happy - and I dozed. I woke up too hot and we went to the water. You were so sure of yourself; you kept asking me to come in deeper but I wouldn't, even when you reminded me that I'd promised I would if you were with me. I know you thought it was because I was afraid, but really it was that I liked watching you splash and smile. I liked watching you return to me.

We walked back and slept. When I woke up you asked me to put sunscreen on you, so I passed my hands over your chest and arms slowly, carefully. Your breathing changed and I'd know that sound anywhere, so I leaned in to kiss you. You caught my elbow, holding me there for a moment, then let me go. I rubbed SPF into your calves and when I looked up, you were asleep.

Later we packed up and got on the train home. We snacked and joked and flirted, and then in a silent agreement pulled our books out. You turned halfway in the seat to lean against the window, and I nestled between your parted legs, my elbow on your left knee. You rested the spine of your book on my back, and your hand, too. There was something about that moment: it was so familiar, so comfortable, it hinted at a life that could be built. It revealed a life that existed already, in some fashion.

You pulled me into a corner of Penn Station to tell me you'd had a really good day and to say goodbye. We made plans for the evening, though it was already evening, and we parted ways. When I got home, the sand in my suit made me smile.

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