The 201 bus back to the station is already full and her perfume is a punch in the face.
Cinnamon, clove, nutmeg; trapped in her rain sodden coat. It’s December and the rain has been coming into the city at 4pm every day for a week. Shrunk into the metal safety bar behind me I examine her bewildered face behind sleep deprived lids. I don’t think that I could ever look like that after a rain shower, in the bus light the droplets on her scarf turn to molten gold. Is this a crush or am I just exhausted?
She snaps her head around, plastic tortoiseshell earrings sticking to her neck haphazardly, results of the downpour.
“Have you got the time?”
“Uhh yeah it’s half four.”
“Hey thanks.” Audibly.
“Shit,” muttering into her coat collar, turning away. I want so badly to be drunk on a liquor that smells like her perfume.
A metallic voice from the front of the bus indicates the next stop. She steps off gingerly into the street.
As we pull away I get hungry. I wish that I had stolen her coat.
She stands like a maple tree bent by a northwest wind, steadily dripping gold into the city drains.
The last time I was on a plane to go on holiday was with you
And this time, the city sprawl lit up at night glows for me only,
from the height the tiny golden lamps on ships are strung out on a black thread
They are your smile in the dark.
It’s 1am in the departure terminal
The carpet is bathed in neon hues and I want to dig myself into the candy spill and find you there
But the ache in my eyelids will remind me that you are not here any more.
It’s 2am in a city that is a stranger to me
It is towers of glass and cold steel and bright bone
My muscles are so tired of carrying these memories.
Before I board a train I will peel the last one off, shed it and stick it to the curb, a filmy skin, so that the next passerby knows your name.
I wanna be in love with someone whose heart is on fire.
I wanna be in love with someone who has been cracked open, spilt out, bright yellow yolk, running into the cracks of an infinity tunnel. Hammer to stone, fingernails to cement, breaking through into an overcast day, casting a stubborn shadow.
I wanna be in love with someone who has had to hold the fragments of their absolute idol. Grinning and bearing it as the shards pierce flesh, knowing that this is their burden to bear because there is nobody else. Someone who has wanted to be held but has had to hold.
I wanna be in love with someone who has danced with self destruction and spat in its face. Has had to sweat until most of the grime has gone, can recognise a smile from years ago of the most weathered of faces, endless and boundless and emotional and fucking aware.
I wanna be in love with someone who sees blood on the pavement and mourns and then fights. Hope is not just sunshine hitting your cheek on a December morning or the sweet scent of turning away, hope is shaking voices rising together or not counting on someone else to do it or making love when you know that the world is going to end.
I wanna be in love with someone who has seen that the modern projection of love that we run through our heads on rusted film reels is causing us all to rot from within, heavy bodies soaked in expectation, but I wanna be in love with someone who tries