Three Arches and a Kiss
It was New Year’s eve. Both the times. The first kiss, and the last goodbye. Ironies and full circles.
I’d kissed before, more than once, kisses and people. But that first kiss with him, it will always remain with me, to my grave? No, fortunately and unfortunately more than that. It will follow me to heaven or hell, to nothingness, to another space, wherever I go it will stay within me.
That day didn’t exactly start off too well. Remember I kept trying to call you and you wouldn’t pick up? And how I thought you had forgotten our date? I almost walked back home but then you called, and you came. I chose the place, though I barely knew the way. And now when I look back, it was like that for us, I knew what I wanted, but I had no idea how to go on about it. And you gave that to me, not only did you show me the way, but in many ways you taught me how to find my way. I was after all a classic example of confused and lost.
I have often, since last New Year’s eve thought, wondered, speculated, if I regret the time I have spent with you, on you. But not a single time during which I have obsessed over this question the answer has been yes. No, I don’t regret you happening to me love. I saw this video last night, and even though what we have is fading away, and for all I know will soon turn into one of those memories you think never took place, this video reminded me of you.
What you and I had I realise now, was a beautiful mixture of a fairy tale and grounded reality. The kiss, no story can ever get it better. And even as I write this I am inclined to forget that it didn’t work out and just look back, and keep looking back. Sometimes I wish I could make time stop and just go back to that kiss, and just experience it on repeat. But that can’t be now, can it?
We started our climb, the destination was not near and it took us hours to reach. And even when we did, the moments though happy were skeptical, apprehensive, a little scared, with passions cropping up again and again, just like that hare that kept coming back, and the wind, moody, unable to decide which way to go. We talked, a lot and about a zillion things. Mum called and I lied with ease, telling her I was in college when I was sitting atop a five hundred year old waning soldier’s post on the boundary of a fort, and on the outskirts of the city. I can still summon up the memory of when we were sitting, under the middle arch, legs hanging over the edge and you playing Fade to Black; I had just been introduced to Metallica, by you- like so many other things, feelings, ideas, that you opened my eyes to. So even today, and I know in the future to come as well, they will always remind me of you.
And that is also the reason that trying to fall out love with you is such an arduous and exacting task on me.
It would be naive to only recall what was good and pretend it was all sunshine. It wasn’t.
You asked me if you could kiss me, and I said not right now. Oh it was folly to say so. But maybe not. Because then the kiss after wouldn’t have been so prefect would it? We still fight over who made the first move. Do you still think it was me who seduced you? Well then you were always a brat of the highest order. I don’t know how it started, I just know that we were sitting, side by side, my head on your shoulder and I turned to look at you I think, when suddenly but not unanticipatedly I found to my surprise and elation, your lips on mine.
Our hands just found each other’s, and more. Grazing my fingers through your hair, feeling your hands on my waist, grasping me, touching me, holding me, tightly and yet lightly. That kiss was an awakening, for I never knew that a kiss could bring out such a multitude of fervor and thrill and emotions; and all of it at such a pinnacle, just like the place were at. The sun shone, its last saving grace before it too had to set, and we had to go as well. But just a few twinkling instants more, our heads, our lips, our minds, kept saying. But it had to end. And we climbed down, the intoxication and the drama of the kiss echoing in our memories and on our lips.
And in the same way, years later, the rush, it went away somewhere, I don’t know where, we don’t know where.
Those arches are there no longer, someone broke them down. Almost like a warning of what would happen to us in the time to come. But as long as it lasted it was worth it all. That kiss under the arch, along with more, will be treasured and revered by me. A memory that I will never trade for anything.
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