I wrote myself a letter and rolled it in a ring. I left it in the grocery bag of play jewelry under my bed, dating it for when I figured it would be relevant to find.
I found it three years premature. But it was long enough ago that I'd forgotten. I wrote myself a second letter and rolled it in a ring. I placed it by the other and pushed the bag back under the bed.
I don't remember what I said, but I don't forget it's there.
Today I think I might write myself a third, read the second, roll the third in a ring... I haven't decided.
But you're the reason I want to write it.
A letter to myself about how perhaps we, someday... isn't what I want to express right now. Maybe as the colors change I'll have the notion again to pen to myself. But today I want to write to you.
I'm listening to the album I bought last year. I thought of you when I first heard it. I told myself not to match these acoustic songs of love to you--I've been the fool that way before and wrecked many a good song with later bitter memories. But I couldn't help myself. There was something about the strong sense of autumn her voice brings, and the drives through autumn I took to a place where you'd be. I learned from my past mistakes not to assume you felt all I did. I learned from past mistakes that I perhaps wasn't really even feeling all I claimed. I ignored I loved you.
I still ignore it.
Well, ignore that I could say "love." I ignore that I let myself slip there. I don't think I love you.
But I know I could.
I remember it all now. I felt like I stood on the curb, and you kept driving past. You wouldn't ignore me, but you wouldn't stay. I almost didn't want you to stay. I didn't want to wreck the view I had from the curb. If you stopped and I let word slip, who's to say you'd ever drive past again?
I didn't care how short of glimpses I had. I just knew I wanted the chance to see at some point, however far-apart those chances were.
And then near the end you started slowing down. I was so used to you speeding past I'd almost stopped paying attention; then with absense of my knowledge you were near stopping. But you had to keep driving--you have to keep driving. It's who you are. That's something about you I'd say I loved, if love was a word I felt safe using with you. I don't want to label what can't be--what won't ever be. But I won't let go of the option, because you give me sufficient reason to believe that love might be applicable before long.
The way you'd shift gears and crawl past my spot on the curb, the way you'd look as you passed... I felt you saw something. And at first my tender pride assumed you'd taken the route of the other and slowed the car to taunt me. I feared you slowed to fuel you're ego.
But you had something the other didn't. An inconsistent sincerity. Not inconsistent like I was being ignored, just that some days we'd pass, but the mental drive you were on wasn't passing my curb.
I almost thank you for not driving past me each time we met. My heart would have broken itself when it ended in nothing.
I know you know. I could tell when you'd meet my eyes that you knew. And for a time you, like the other, regarded what my eyes betrayed with laughter. But it was that day I lost sight of the amusement behind that I hoped for you. It was that day when it seemed like some window in you opened, and like me you became victim of the inability to hide the thoughts of the heart. I don't expect you're "hung up on me." Part of me doesn't expect you to ever be. But I know there's a part of you that knows not only what I feel, but what you feel. I've seen that part. There were moments when you were driving past, and he saw more than just seeing me. And in those moments I could see what it was that part of you saw. He's pressed through numerous times, unknown to your more dominate portion.
I think part of you is ignorant to it.
Or refuses to believe it, because let's face it.
I'm not your type.
But it's the glimpses of that part of you that keeps me on the curb, craving the moments you'll drive past. And it's that part of you that slows the car when you pass; it's that part of you that looks. It's that part of you that sees me. It's that part of you that loves me, and that part of you that I trust saying I love to.
I hope you wake up when you're gone. Part of me knows you will, but I haven't decided if this is the wise portion that knows you're highly capable of loving me, or the portion that hopes on things that can never exist. Regardless, I'll be sure to keep my spot on the curb, just in case. I'll be here when you come back,I'll be here when you drive past again.
And if you don't know then, then I guess I read you wrong, or I guess you lost that part of you, or I guess we weren't meant to be more than we are.
But I won't give up before then. How can I? I think of you as often as you drive past. And whenever I hear this acoustic autumn voice I'll have to picture what we started to have. I'll have to remember what you started to release before it ended.
I want to be with you. Or at least have the chance to try.
If you're coming around, it won't take long.
Until then, I'll wait on the curb for the day you drive past and throw the car in reverse and come back, and all I can see is the part of you that loves me.
"And in this so-called small world,/ we all have a story that wants to be told./
Will you be in my story?/ Will you be?/
...Will you be my somebody?/ Will you be?"
-Katelyn Jolley: Will You Be