I watched myself lose you.
It’s like I sat in an empty theater and watched you walk off stage.
Scene by scene you’d inch closer and closer to the sides of the stage.
Holding her hand, you’d stroll a few feet;
Taking a solo cup out of his red-stained hands that had my blood on them, you’d plump down on his couch besides the thick velvet curtain of the theater house;
You puffed smoke into the air from the cigar he bought you, walked through the cloud that rose in the air, and came out unscathed, unaffected by my wheezing, disappearing.
Fall came, and I was watching.
I walked through college halls, kept my head low, smiled, participated. And watched. Watched you put on the most moving performance I’d ever seen.
And then a red-headed, freckle face sat down next to me in a night class.
With each step you took towards left stage, he took another step towards me from right stage.
He was loud, and his voice was there when I needed someone to tell me how love should work; he loved a woman with his whole heart, and knew how to love me, too; he made people laugh, and he listened. God, he listened.
So when he walked onto the balcony of the old library and smacked a bag of Twizzlers on to the ledge I was leaning on, I realized I wasn’t worrying about where you were standing on the stage anymore.
I didn’t want to hold on to the things you’d left me holding; I wanted to pick up everything he was waiting for someone to carry.
Sometimes, people show up and they aren’t meant to be some loud, deafening statement of love and passion you can write about; they’re not a hand you can hold or lips you can kiss or someone you can hold close on a couch during a scary movie.
Sometimes, people show up just so you know that there are people who know how to really show up; people who show up to constantly remind you how wrong you’ve been for settling; people who just show up.
And it’s these people we should hold out for.