If I had been there you’d be downright furious with me. We would have talked until the sun shone through your window, or until the RA busted me for being out past curfew. You think it’s rough what we did last night? Imagine if I’d been there. You’d be downright furious with me for spending hours with my new best friend and robbing her of precious sleep. I’d be giddy that you let me talk with you for hours. No, you’d only be mad that I kept you from sleep before an 8 am class. What would it have been like, if I was there with you?
If I was there with you we wouldn’t have laughed at you sliding from the chair. We might still have found our way rug-ward though. If so, it would have been received rather raucously with laughter. Your chair isn’t big enough for us to have started the night in. Oh we could squeeze into it, I can fit my chopstick of a body nearly anywhere, but it would have been intimate. Too intimate for the start of our shaded shenanigans. No, if I was there with you, we would have been on your couch. Perhaps we would have been back to back, the feeling of your freshly washed hair on my shoulder. Back to back you can feel every breath, the steady rise and fall of your partner’s chest. I wouldn’t just delight in the sound of your laughter, but the feeling of it as it radiates from within you into me warming my insides setting off explosions of glee in my mind. Sorry, that sentence got away from me. Instead of back to back, maybe your head would have found its way to my lap. Your head in my lap and my fingers running through that beautiful hair. Your beautiful hazel eyes looking up into mine. I wonder if that would have been before or after you got the grapes. I wonder if in person I’d be more or less the putty in those beautiful hands. I wonder if I’d still be feeding you grapes off the vine with your head in my lap. Actually. If I had you in my lap the answer would almost certainly be yes. Then again I wouldn’t know unless I was there with you.
If I was there with you would it have been as loud? Would our voices have shattered the stillness of that wacky Waco night? Would our laughter have rudely roused roommates restful respites? Or would our voices have been hushed, hardly heard whispers of our private thoughts? Would we have kept voices low? Oh, pretending to be considerate to your roommates, as we would be drawing near to hear the other speak? Drawing near to hear sincere speech spoken softly from heart to lips to ears to heart. Perhaps, though knowing us I doubt it, we would have cut out the ears. Maybe we would have spoken lips to lips. I doubt it, but I won’t know until I’m there with you.
If I was there with you would we have stayed in all night? Would we wander Waco with one another? Would we have danced in the fountains in the darkness without a care in the world? Would we have found some place to loiter until light lit the Brazos, scattering sun skyward? Or would our legs have had us pacing your living room?
Would your Writing Romeo have stood,
You think to leave you ‘lone for good?
Would my Guitar Fret Juliet,
Have been in nervous pacing set?
Would our parental worries have set our steps far apart, or would we have stepped into each other? Would our parents fears and preconceptions have repulsed us? Do you think I’m so easily disturbed? I guess we won’t know since I wasn’t there.
If I was there with you would you have still called me yours? When you called me your penguin, I melted. I wonder if you still would have said that if I was in the room. Oh V, you and I dance perilously with our friendship. We toy with the possibilities of what we might become op and where we might go without a care. You play with my heart like a toy. Yet when you do so, it is so unlike most girls. They play with hearts as a mere fancy whim, it is to them but another passing thing. Yet when you do this, It feels as though my heart is your most precious plaything. As though if you were to break it, you would be devastated. I imagine, and hope, you would be like a small child rushing straight to your father to have it fixed. I wonder if dolls forget they are dolls, believing themselves more than what they are. If my heart is your plaything, please be careful. I beg you not to drop me when your fingers find the rough spots. I beg you not to throw me away when you encounter the chips, pocks, and scars there. I beg you not to cast me aside when you find my broken pieces. Those are from careless lovers, players who dropped my heart. If I was there would you still have called me yours?
When I’m there, will we talk about our secret? Will we discuss the thing we pretend wasn’t said? The thing that we refuse to forget. The thing we shared in heavy silence. The thing I wonder if we both secretly desired to hear. That thing. That terrifying thing that took terrific courage to say. Will we talk about when we were before each other with open hearts and found something wonderful? I don’t know what to do with what I now know, but I know I will have to figure it out. I will do that, when I’m there with you.
By TKH Hamilton