what if

today, i saw you and thought

what if?

you were standing with your friends, 

hair unruly from scrimmaging.

in that moment,

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seeing you for the first time in a long time,

i wish i could be standing next to you.

my mind traveled across the room,

floating nearby yours.

i wanted to hear your words,

know the jokes you were laughing at.

i wanted to be there.

because, in a what if world,

we might’ve walked into that room together.

i might’ve told you the joke you laughed at

or been the one who got the pleasure of having your words.

i might’ve never even thought about a what if without you.

maybe, you would’ve broken my heart already.

i would’ve walked in and turned right around,

a heavy airiness in my chest.

but, i would’ve been able to fall for you.

i know, i’ll never get the chance.

we’re close, yet i’ve never felt farther from you.

maybe you saw me today and went away thinking about me.

maybe you didn’t recognize me, didn’t even deen me significant.

but, i’ll tell myself that tonight

we’ll fall asleep thinking of each other, wondering

what if.

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pieces

i hope i’m not asking too much of you.

i’m not asking you to fix me,

because that wouldn’t be fair.

i’m not asking you to accept me with wide open arms,

but i’d love that.

i don’t want you to be my friend,

because we’ve never truly worked as just friends before.

i wish we weren’t on different time zones,

we always fall out of infatuation when the other falls in.

i hope that we don’t crumble apart,

because i can’t handle another landslide.

just like i’m sure you can’t handle another person leaving you behind.

i promise i’d never walk away from you,

i’d never leave you stranded.

i can’t promise forever,

that’s too much to bear.

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i can only promise you pieces of me,

a puzzle with some empty spots.

instead of presents wrapped in bows,

i’ll give you my heart and soul

in the shape of little irregular pieces of cardboard.

i’ll wait for you to fit me in next to the edge pieces,

i’ll make it easy for you.

because, it’s so easy to see myself with you,

my head fits into the dip in your chest

like we were made for each other.

maybe you’re my final piece to the puzzle,

but i’ll never force you to fit with me.

well-traveled hands

do you remember how it used to be?

when we were still innocent,

so much younger?

do you remember the first time you saw me?

i was wearing my cousin’s old tank top and a pair of shorts.

i remember the first time i saw you.

actually, maybe not the first time,

but i do remember the first time

I really saw you.

that stubborn piece of hair that never stayed in place.

your hands worn and callused,

but like home to the touch.

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your smirk that can still melt me.

i remember that night,

surrounded by friends,

when i knew i wanted you.

but, now it’s too late,

you aren’t the same boy with the messy hair and soft smile.

our hands are like strangers,

i’m not even sure i know how yours feel anymore.

the lines i used to trace,

delicately, so as not to cause any slight ripple in their perfect surfaces.

we’re strangers,

but unlike the strangers we were when we met.

now, the uneasy feeling is from lack of contact,

not the absence of it altogether.

i don’t know the new you,

you don’t know the new me.

maybe one day,

i’ll once again trace the lines in your hands,

feeling their gorgeous warmth on the pads of my fingertips.

maybe you’ll remember the little things i do,

so unaware that i do them,

and you’ll tell me about it,

like it’s a well-known fact.

what i’m really trying to say is,

when can we not be strangers,

when can we be the new girl and the boy with the floppy hair

that knew each other like the backs of their well-traveled hands?

when i see you again

it’ll be a tuesday.

the sun will be shining, but rain clouds will be looming in the distance.

i’ll see you in line for ice cream on the boardwalk and race towards you.

you’ll turn around when i call your name and your lovely brown eyes will instantly lock with mine.

you were always so good with eye contact.

obviously my heart will skip a beat, but i’ll never let you know.

we’ll talk for hours about school, family, boys, and girls,

just like old friends.

because that’s all we were,

all we are.

maybe we’ll dip our feet into the vast, open ocean,

and it’ll send chills down our spines.

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but, maybe, it’ll start to rain,

so we’ll rush back to your car and wait for my sister to come get me.

you’ll laugh at me for still not having my license,

even though “i’m almost there!”

but, i won’t be nervous when my sister doesn’t respond to my text,

because i’ve never felt anything but safe around you.

so, we’ll talk some more and more until i check the time and realize we’ve been sitting here for hours.

finally, you decide to go outside because you just hate sitting around.

at first, i’ll let you stand out there by yourself, the rain beating down on your hair and catching in your eyelashes.

but, my speedy little heart will tell my reluctant brain to just go.

so, i’ll jump out of your car and spin around the parking lot and let the rain soak through my clothes.

then, you’ll take my hand and we’ll spin together just like out of the final scene in a rom-com.

but, my sister will eventually come.

you’ll wrap me in a towel and i’ll go home.

i’ll wash the ice cream stain off my sweater and tell my sister i had an alright time.

maybe i’ll tell my friends about you,

but i’ll probably keep our moment to ourselves.

i guess i’m just selfish like that.