I have fallen
many times. Out of trees, over curbs, on rocks, in love, out of love, off of swings, in drunken stupors
, in public, in the dark.
I have found people that make me trip over myself, make me look like I never learned to walk at all.
Look, I have found myself dealing with love
many times. In love and at love and over love and out of love
. It's like a string I pull behind me and weave throughout all the experiences in my life. In and out, in and out. Under bridges and over mountains and around in circles, spinning. Plait
ing a lifetime of experiences around this string.
For as many people as I have caught in this string; for all the people that I have knitted and tied up with this string—there are many
more that are never included.
Maybe it was the man behind the counter at the bagel
store. Big brown eyes and thick eyebrows. Handsome and charming. I could have wound him up right then and there, pulled him in and strung him up. I didn't. I can't tell you why.
Or maybe the boy
in my college literature class who was constantly asking me out for coffee.
Or the girl in high school who knew many things about me
long before I had even dreamed of figuring them out. Who wanted to pull me in
close and wrap me up in her own string but I pushed her away.
There was the guy from the gym—push
ed. The girl working as a fast food register jockey--pushed. The boy at the bar all those Friday
nights--pushed. The supermarket girl—pushed.
Sometimes I don't even want to push these people away. But it's like I walk around with my arms all extended, waiting for prey. Sometimes I catch people in my arms and wrap them up as if they were an insect on my spider web
. Other times I use those arms for pushing; for shoving. Just push them away. Away and far enough away that I don't have to worry about it hurting me any.
I was already predisposed to pushing when I met Kate
. I was used to it. I hadn't used the string in years except for places, objects, memories, pieces. No humans in the web anymore, okay?
But there she was, all whispers and pinecones and smiles. My arms were no match when it comes to pushing away beauty. So I didn't push this time. I didn't even try.
I wound her up in string and handed her the end.
I said, here is my string, give it a tug. Unravel this scarf
, this blanket, this life, this heart
I've been making. Unravel
it and leave the string dangling because it doesn't have to matter anymore.
And she did.