When she’s around the stars become brighter,
A bird somewhere sings her name in song.
She makes me see the world as magic,
And my heart wants to sing along…
I paused briefly from writing to look at her across the room. She was busy with something, I smiled and went back to writing. My glance must have caught her eye for I could see her looking up at me now. My heart was all warm with the thoughts going through my head. To write the words. ‘what a romantic fool am I?’ I thought to myself, sure that she would be pleased.
I turned to look and she had most certainly stopped whatever she was doing and was looking right at me now. ‘She must see the love in my eyes, yet somehow she does not look pleased,’ I thought.
“You’re doing it again aren’t you?”
She slid her chair closer but didn’t try to look at the paper. She saw the confused look in my face. And her disappointed look faded just a little as she smiled. But a smile of sweet pity like one might expect from someone finding a lost puppy.
“Is it a song? Or perhaps a poem?” she asked.
My beaming lovestruck look must have faded a touch at my being ‘discovered’. “A poem.” I stammered.
“mmm hmm,” she said silently almost as if to herself. “And by the look on your face I’d guess it’s a poem about rainbows and dancing fairies, braiding my hair and following me down streets of gold?”
I must have blushed, but she had seen through me before I could even speak a word. She leaned forward to look at the paper now and I felt like a wounded child.
“Oh dear one,” she said looking up and cupped my cheek. “Don’t be sad and please don’t be hurt. It’s just not what I desire from you.”
She pushed her chair back a bit and crossed her arms and looked up briefly as she searched for what to say next. Then just as suddenly as the whole affair began she stood up and threw her arms out to her sides.
“Take a good long look at me! Look me up and down.” I obeyed and she must have caught at least the slightest glint in my eye even through my scolded stance. “See, that’s what I’m talking about. Now… how can I make you understand this…” She looked up again crossing her one arm across her chest and tapped at her chin with the hand of the other, “… without wounding you further,” then she continued as though to herself but as much for my benefit, “than you already think you are that is.”
She resumed her arms out again, “This will have to work I guess. Look me over again. Look me all over.” Pausing again, she asked “Do you not like what you see?”
“I very much like what I see.” I answered without hesitation.
“Very well, then tell me – is there anything about me you don’t like? Be honest now, there must be something. You need not tell me what it is, a simple yes or no will suffice.”
I held my tongue and she repeated. “Oh come now, I’m not trying to trick you with this question. I want you to be honest. Think not just of how you see me in this moment, as you venture to write that poem. Think of me in totality. There is no doubt some thing, perhaps many things, that bother you in some way? Yes? No?”
“Well, of course, I guess?” I answered hesitantly.
I sighed. “Of course there is, but…”
“Hold that thought,” she cut me off before I could qualify that statement. “I will be curious to know where you are going with it but first to my point. But – no doubt you were about to say that there are many many things you like about me.”
“Exactly!” I said proudly.
“Do any of them involve stars actually glowing brighter?” she asked in earnest.
The question caught me completely off guard. I didn’t know quite what to say but she continued. “And have you ever really heard a bird singing my name?”
She put a hand aside my head now and started to stroke my hair. Without even realizing I was saying it I whispered softly, “It’s things like that I like.”
“What’s that?” she inquired putting a hand under my chin to raised my down turned eyes up to her. “Oh poor love, you think I am angry with you. No no no, please hear me out. Yes, it’s things like this that you like. Stay with me here, I have a point to this.”
She pulled her hand away from my hair stroking my cheek as she stepped back to her arms out position as before, again saying, “Take a good long look at me up and down. Here I am, this is all you get! No magic fairies, no power over the stars, no mystical influence over the vocabulary of singing birds.”
Now I was just staring at her completely perplexed not quite knowing where she was going with this.
“Don’t you see? You look at me with the eyes of a mystified romanticist like this, and you imagine me holding all these powers over heaven and earth and bestowed with all sorts of abilities that no woman can possibly have. And…”
She drew in a long deep breath. “And if you imagine me enough times that way, how will you ever expect me to live up to the image your ‘heart’ has created for you? All I will be able to do is to disappoint you when I don’t live up to the dreams you weave about me!”
“I love you for how it makes me feel when ‘your’ voice speaks my name,” she continued. “Because there is no one at present I would rather hear saying it. I love you for the way you look at me when I smile. I dearly hope that look is not due to you holding some notion that my smile can cure cancer. I hope that is simply because you love to see me smile.”
“I do!” I answered.
“I’m glad for it!” she replied, “So then why don’t you write of that? Or of how my hand feels when I stroke your hair? I don’t want you to love me for what you wish me to be or what you imagine me to be. I want you to love me for who and what I am.”
With that she stroked my hair again and picked up the pencil that I had unknowingly dropped the first time she touched my head. I must have lit up at her touch because she smiled even more. I understood.
She kissed my forehead and walked back across to her seat to resume her work. I scratched across my previous words on the page and began writing again:
The touch of her hand makes my worries seem lighter,
She makes me want to sing the words of a good song.
She shares the world with me through her eyes,
And she stands by me even when I do wrong…
I glanced up at her again. She didn’t turn her head this time, but even so, she somehow read right through me. I could just make out the glint of a smile from around her flowing hair.
“I love you! Now keep writing you fool. I do so want to read it when you are done.” she said almost laughing. So I resumed my work in earnest – and with realistic honesty this time.
(I was inspired to write this fictional romantic moment after a daydreaming session. I was pondering the notion of what kind of a person I might be wanting to spend my time with and getting in a sappy romantic mood imagining me writing a love poem for the kind of a girl I would care about. When my own daydream surprised me when the girl I imagined interrupted my foolish fantasy-making on the paper to bring me back down to reality to make me realize that what I want to love is someone ‘real’ for ‘real’ reasons.)
be sure to check out some of my other ‘romantic fiction‘ shorts:
Love, Photography and Sailboats *** NEW!!! ***