claire can't see me.

a mom who is cooler in words than in life.

a repost of “my measurements”

for you* because i think i willed you to turn up. i read this last week & smiled. this week you turned up on facebook. so…this is for you.

“and it will be the kiss by which you measure all others for the rest of your life.”
– anthony hopkins in hearts in atlantis.

him,  wide smile & vainglorious laugh that would travel down blocks and set up camp in my ears. him, barely taller than me but under the summer street lights i saw him as a giant. much larger than my life. south miami’s very own deity. & we would all wait on the sides of our pride to hear his voice travel from around the corner. young girls using blow pops for lip gloss. older girls who had mastered the art of sending secret messages to their would-be lovers in their giggles. & even their mothers, heavy hipped with moon shaped eyes longing for someone to stargaze in their faces.

& then there was me, stumbling in my plain skin, my awkward style, boyish, & homely. the girl with no rhythm in my walk & with a name that made most choke to pronouce.

perhaps not everyone waited for him like i imagine. maybe it was just me. but i do remember that in his presence they all bloomed. & blushed. & chortled along side of me. they all became roses & tulips & lillies & daisies stretching towards his laughter. we all wanted to be clothed by the comfort of his eyes. whenever he looked at you, you felt beautiful. old, heavy, young, clumsy, all of us. we all wanted to see our reflections in him, to see for ourselves what he saw in us.

& again, that might have been just me that thought all of that. & maybe its a mixture of memories that i’m pulling from that keeps creating this folklore around his name whenever i think of him. or maybe its because the night that i saw myself in his eyes, i didn’t realize i’d never be the same.

he was my real first kiss.  i was amazed to be beside him. giving into his enchantment. he made leaning up against a dusty parked car feel like venice. like privacy. & happily ever afters. & before we kissed he said that in order for our kiss to mean something i had to know i was beautiful. or else i would be too busy thinking i wasn’t good enough & the magic of the moment wouldn’t happen.

i closed my eyes & mouthed “i’m beautiful”.

& he leaned in towards my face, bestowing me with the purpose of kissing. the gentle take over of mouths. teaching me that tongues were bench players, “you send your magic thru lips” his kiss lectured. nibble. kiss each lip individually. brush a slighty parted mouth across your partners closed one. gentle. focus on the bottom lip. breathe them. swallow their air. take them in. slowly.

& that was that.

he wasn’t much more than my first kiss. or at least, i won’t allow myself to remember all the other things (gossip, rumors, heartache) because i want to keep his name mythical to me.

afterall, he is the one i measured every other kiss against.

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