We haven’t been dating very long- a couple of weeks, at this point. We’ve settled into relaxing with music, drinks and each other’s company after the kids are fast asleep.
I’m mesmerized by her. It’s been a long time since a woman had my attention the way that Jennifer has it. I take another drink, my eyes slide past her, subtly. Watching her out of the corner of my eye- rapt, but not wanting her to know how much of my attention she is actually occupying.
Her hand rests on mine. I don’t move, because I don’t want to change anything about this moment. The music has ended. I know that I should get up, move to the computer and play more music- to extend this perfection- to prevent anything from interfering with this brief slice of love.
But I don’t want to take her hand off mine.
I watch her eyes as she looks around my living room, she takes in the art on the walls, the pictures of the kids, the family, and her eyes end up on my bookshelf. She glances from book to book- and I see her confusion. Who has books? Who reads? It’s plainly illustrated across her features as she is trying to map my persona into her world…
She can’t hide her disdain, her smile morphs into a frown. I see it coming, and I squeeze her hand and rise- “Need another drink?” Yes, my go to excuse for avoidance.
“Shuure… “ I go to get us both another drink. A part of me hopes that she won’t go there- but I know it’s coming- it always does, with the simple ones.
“Sooo- you read a lot, huh?”. I take a long gulp, then smile, bend to kiss her brow and hand her another beer.
“Do you think all those books make you smart?”
I don’t tell her what I want to, that everything that you read, that you experience, that you absorb- makes you more. It’s too abstract to explain. I just say- “I just like to read.”
Perhaps she senses my apprehension. Maybe she feels inadequate and wants to level the playing field in her mind. I see it coming and I can’t stop it.
“I read a lot too.” She informs me. “But I only read one book.”
Of course you only do, you sweet, beautiful woman, of course you only do. Its times like this, I realize that if there is a God, he sure loves to fuck with me.
I don’t ask, because, really? There’s no need. But she tells me, anyway. “The Bible.” Well, the sarcastic side of me says, I didn’t imagine you were re-reading Charlotte’s Web. But the part of me that was thinking I could fall in love with her only says… “I respect that.” But I don’t. How can I respect someone who has only ever opened one book?
I take another big drink. She continues on, about how the only book anyone needs is the bible and everything else just confuses the singularity of our souls…
I take another drink. And I turn the music back up.
And I tell God- Wipe that shit eating Grin off your face, smartass.
I remember a moment where I told myself that I would find God for a girl like her.
Then I think, I wish that she would’ve said to herself: “I’d find reality for a boy like him”.
But in the end, all that I really wanted was a woman who could understand me, at least a little bit.
And- she didn’t- and so, this song has ended- but I remember its beautiful melody- wrapped up in illusion as it was…
Kirk, May 2015- Levelland, TX