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Monday, January 24, 2011


Once she could remember every word, taste, touch and smell. Every bittersweet minute could be savored and replayed. The years sped by. Details slipped away. His face faded; his last name forgotten.

Today she felt the memory stir, demanding to be revisited.

Inventing an errand, she left for a trip into town. She stopped in the city park, stared blindly at a paperback and turned her mind to the past to sift through the last faint traces. She remembered drinking in every nuance at the time—voice, scent, expression and the intimate touches they shared. She remembered, but could no longer find the facts. They’d finally fled, bleached away by the years.

A sharp burn centered in her chest, pain for this loss. Did nothing remain? The first time someone made love to you. When you realized there was a difference. When you knew every single damned time before, it had meant nothing more than momentary gratification. When you knew it would never happen again.

No. One moment still lingered. Clear as a bell on a humid summer Sunday morning.

He’d just climaxed; they watched each other wordlessly. He kissed her on the forehead. Her hand lifted to touch the exact spot as she remembered. He’d stretched forward and rested his chin on top of her head. She could still feel the pressure of that odd gesture, completely covered and contained by his body. The unspoken regret, the apology and the ending of something that couldn’t begin, all communicated in that last moment. Graduation was in less than a week, families and his fiancĂ© due in a few days.

Thank God, it wasn’t gone.