Return to To me he is a daisy and I keep trying to count his petals (personal)

Simple, but yet....

It is raining heavily and the lights are out again, the overtaxed and aged air conditioners of this building contributing to the power outage. Although I have just showered, I feel sticky and unwashed, the warmth of this summer night clings. Fumbling around in darkness occasionally punctuated by flashes of lightning, I find a candle and manage to light it. Despite my little beacon, I nearly stumble over an ottoman in the living room and knock my shin against the coffee table. Cursing inarticulately, I head into the kitchen where I find him sitting on the linoleum floor, eating a pomegranate. The candle's flame dances over him, re-painting juice-stained fingers and lips scarlet, then purple, then black. Seeing him thus dyed I want to fall upon him, licking and slurping and cruelly biting tender, sweet flesh. I blow out the candle.

Simple, but yet....

We're having an argument. Our arguments are always over the most trivial things. This time, over a breath. There are certain names we do not mention to each other. One of his closest friends despises me and makes no effort to disguise this fact; I, in turn, loathe him genially, with cold politeness, and when forced to endure his presence revel in my silent martyrdom. The solution has been to keep us separate except in certain social situations where encountering one another is unavoidable. My beloved and I are driving towards the mountains when he mentions the unspeakable name. I bite my tongue but cannot stifle a sigh of displeasure. I should have remembered that sometime the words left unspoken can also harm. He berates me for callousness and begins to cry. Dry-eyed and exasperated, I have no answers for the accusations flung against me. My crimes have never been straightforward

Simple, but yet....

He doesn't dance well. It is not that he is graceless, but something about the close press of so many bodies and the flashing lights make him tentative and unsure. The heavy thump of the bass, the smokiness of the air and the cheap liquor have given me a headache and wearily I turn to him, ready to leave. His face has a curiously childish expression, he looks lost. But among all the handsome, confidant dancers gyrating and writhing on the dance floor around him, he alone is unique to me. He alone is rare. I pull him close enough to me that I can smell his cologne through the smoky, humid air, close enough to me that I can feel his heart beating underneath his clothes. I pull him close to me, and we spin.

Simple, but yet....

He is always late. Work was dreadful and I feel haggard and drained. I have fresh bruises near the places that older ones have begun to yellow and fade. I am not in tears, but once more I question my devotion to children who assault and lie, children who think the kind are either gullible or weak. The night air is chill and has teased goosebumps out of my arms. We were supposed to have dinner, but I have been waiting a half-hour for him and the restaurant closes in fifteen minutes more. I resign myself to another evening of the unpalatable, soon only Denny's and the occasional fast food restaurant will be open. He does not arrive for ten more minutes, smiling cheerfully and tunelessly singing along with the radio. He sees my forlorn look and asks, "What's wrong?" There are no apologies.

Simple, but yet....

His mother never sang him lullabies. She loves him in her own fierce way, but he did not grow up with story or song. I snuggle close to him, wrapping my arms around his waist, kissing the nape of his neck. I like to smell his hair, I like the tickling feel of his silky black curls against my nose. I cannot see his face, but I know he is smiling. The lights from cars on the road nearby cascade through the venetian blinds and illuminate the small, brown mole on his left shoulder. I press close to him and begin to croon, "All the Pretty little horses". I feel enfolded in warmth as sleep takes us both.

Simple.

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