The first time we met outside of a classroom was a bookstore – we would drive away from school knowing in a few miles we would have some time to spend together. There was one time when we ran into a fellow student from class, who gave us a knowing look and departed into the stacks. We smiled with a sort of nervous response, but this new mystique, this passion we felt suddenly took over.
I begin with this to set up the reality of our departure. A few years later, we would continue to start our nights, our days, our moments together from another familiar book store. There was more intensity. I would find her reading select classics, perhaps Anais Nin, something deeply romantic and penetrating my psyche with a fascination for her mind. She often had a different book in her hands, inspiring me to pick them up myself and read chapters, read words that spoke loudly of a certain aristocratic elegance, matching the sensuality she offered to me without conditional response. There was one time she carried Edna Vincent Millay’s poetry for a few weeks, and I became a lover of her words. Years after we parted I listened to Prudence Johnson a midwestern celebrity of folk music of sorts, create a rendition of lyric with Millay’s words. I listened with an immediate draw to my dear muse’s memory, and held her in my heart wishing she could share such magic with me, rather than the two of us being miles apart from one another’s lives.
I’m reminded of the bookstore, and our many endeavors together. For certainly a year after we parted I returned to that bookstore, hopeful we might encounter one another just once, to see each other’s eyes and realize immediately we were not mistaken.
Today, I sit near that bookstore writing these words, as a week ago, I said I never would again. So foolish is the heart, that holds the key to a soul in finding peace. I’m here every day. How could I possibly not be, in the face of love?
Words, drawn with passion and mystique, the sensual wonder of knowing there is sweet remedy in the fateful nature of a truly romantic story. Ah, the bookstore visits.