One day, my love.

I met you on a ferris wheel.

Well, that was when I really met you, your soft hands and nervous laughter, nervous but happy.

remember when we first started talking, during awkward lunch hours, and way too late at night over text. I remember that time when you walked me back to the bus and everyone inside was staring at us, but our friends approved. They knew just how perfect we would be for each other.

via i.pinimg.com

I remember that first kiss, so sweet and unsure, but so convinced it was right. I remember realizing how madly I was falling in love with you, when I had to leave you for the summer.

We have such a great history. I mean, you sent me flowers to Germany. You gave me an engraved necklace confessing your love. We’re going to go to Paris together.

So I’m asking. Why do we have to end like this?

Don’t get me wrong, I know this is the best decision for us to make. But why? Why is this the best we can possibly do? The longest we can possibly go?

I don’t understand the universe. Once it brought two soulmates together, why would it break them apart so soon? Why would it give us this choice to make, so bitter and sour and burning hot?

It’s not fair. You know that, I know that. And obsequiously, we go along with it.

I see couples that get so much more time together, that get to go out for dinner on a Tuesday night, or go watch a movie after school, or walk their dogs together at sunset, and I am so jealous. It’s that red, yellow, glowing jealousy that you can’t turn off. I hate it. I want to be happy with what we are given. But there will always be this huge part of me that wishes for us to have that life together. I know we deserve it.

One day, my love, one day.

Advertisements

goodbye

you know, i write all these poems for you,

but what if when we meet again it’s different.

the world is still on your shoulders,

but in a new way.

your hair doesn’t flop the same way.

our conversations are short and stunted.

our awkward moments too awkward.

Photo Credit: pinterest.com

when you see me again,

it won’t be like the millions of times i’ve played it over in my head.

everything will be different.

and, i’m scared as hell,

because i want our same.

i want our drawn out conversations about everything and nothing at the same time.

i want when you think of me,

instead of letting the thought float by,

to pick up the phone and call me.

i want our effortlessness and our groove.

the way we worked together was unbelievable.

i can’t imagine you without your snide comments and brilliant random thoughts.

i can’t imagine you with me, without our little quirks.

if we meet again,

it can’t be anything different,

because then we’re already too far apart.

we’re in different universes

when we need to be in the same rooom.

a reminder

everything reminds me of you.

the summer nights that never really begin until 8 pm and

the smell of salt in the air.

sitting by the fire while the breeze comes off the ocean.

my wet hair soaking through your sweatshirt.

i miss that.

peanut butter and jelly sandwiches in ziplock bags,

mountain bikes and dust and

image via pinterest

the music we listened to and the long, hot

afternoon hikes that seemed to last forever.

smiles. i see your smile in every smile.

stars and soda cans and trucks driving through orchards.

pencil sketches or skateboards or grassy hills or pizza boxes.

trying to fit five people into the backseat of the car.

being too loud in movie theaters.

i think about you now because

i haven’t started any of my homework yet,

and i know you probably haven’t either.

whenever i think of anything, i think of you.

maybe that’s why i’m so sad.

Pool toe

When we were kids, we spent the entire summer in the pool.

We would bounce around in the water for hours on end, using our feet to push off the sides so many times that we would get blisters on our toes. By the time we got out, pruned and sunburnt, our feet would be bleeding from scraping them on the concrete so much. But we didn’t care. Mom called it pool toe.

I remember how we used to eat breakfast as fast as we could, and then we would play rock-paper-scissors to see who got to jump in first. We swam from morning until night, only pausing for a lunch break of watermelon and pretzels.

Photo credit: Resources2.news.com

Your hands always shriveled up faster than mine did. You used to tell me it meant we were turning into fish, and I was convinced it was true. You also swam faster than I did, but sometimes, if I was lucky, you’d let me win some of our races.

Whenever there was a breeze it would get too cold in the water. To warm up we’d haul ourselves out of the pool and lay with our stomachs down on the concrete deck, like lizards on rocks.

I remember my tangled, sun bleached hair, and the smell of the special shampoo Mom made me use that prevented it from turning green from the chlorine. I remember family commenting on how bloodshot my eyes were, but I wasn’t bothered. I didn’t mind if my eyes were a little bit red and sore, so long as I could avoid the inconvenience of strapping on goggles.

We had changing lights for when we swam at night. I would stand on the diving board, staring down into the water below. The green water meant there were alligators lurking; so I obviously couldn’t jump in, for danger of being eaten. Blue meant sharks, so once again there were some risks. But when the water was pink, it was clear of all man-eating creatures, so it meant I was free to dive in.

When we were kids, we thought days like those would last forever.

I miss it. When we didn’t care if our fingers were shriveled up like prunes, or if our noses were bright red and peeling, or if we had pool toe.

 

 

Things We Lost In The Fire

I never realized how easy it is to take the things you have for granted, until they disappear into the wind like ashes from a fire. I remember playing those awkward ice breakers with people you’ll never really know, and one question that always seems to show up is: “If you could only take three things from your house in a fire, what would they be?”

I never had a definite answer. Obviously there were the essentials: passport, laptop, cellphone, and valuables, but I never imagined that one day I’d actually have to make that decision. That one day, in a panicked hurry, I’d have to scurry across my dorm room worrying about what I should bring, and being filled with regret over the things I left behind.

On December 4th, 2017, a wildfire ignited its flames outside the place I’ve called my home for the past three years, and on December 5th, it had reached the beloved campus and destroyed multiple classrooms, the dorms, and everything in its wake. On December 4th, we were told to evacuate, and we were asked to grab a backpack for one night. We were told to pack anything we absolutely couldn’t live without, but we were also told not to worry about our other stuff, the fire would pass, and everything would be okay. So, I packed what I held closest to me. I packed my polaroid pictures recalling the memories from my sophomore year. I packed a single stuffed animal: a panda I was given in second grade. I packed my All Time Low pillow, my signed posters, a UCLA shirt, my favorite leggings, and two t-shirts.

Photo Credit: Foster Huntington

But still, there were so many belongings surrendered to the flames. I lost years of memories put up on a small cork board above my wall. There held all my concert tickets, plane tickets, medals, and setlists from concerts I had caught in the crowd. I had lost all my riding ribbons I had won in the last couple of years. I’ve lost tour t shirts, my guitar, articles of clothing which held little bits of my personality in each thread, and class notes I’ve worked on hours into the night just so I could have a good grade the next day. They weren’t the most expensive items in my life, but they were the ones that were tokens of moments in my life that I cherished, or the moments that defined me. They were the things lost in the fire that I regret leaving behind the most. I guess if I could go back in time and grab a few more things, I’d make sure they reached my bag first.

While mourning this fire, my family constantly tried reassuring me that everything was replaceable, but then they’d ask me what I missed most, and what I missed most wasn’t what was replaceable. However, despite the hard process, I come to realize that those small items I’ve lost are still there, but in the form of memories that will stay in my head forever, for the rest of my life. Someday, after all the debris descends into the ground, and the years pass, I will have new tokens from new memories to hang up above my bed, and the tragedies from this fire will soon become a distant memory, only serving reminders through the objects I saved from it.

Spare Change

I collect memories in my head like a child picks up change off the pavement.

A visual: Boy walks home on the sidewalk, making sure to hop over every crack in the pavement. He spots a penny, examines it between two pinched fingers and deems the coin a lucky charm, then stuffs it into a pocket for safekeeping.

Photo Credit: FiveCentNickel.com

Change, what a funny thing it is.

I often find myself reminiscing on the past. In some ways I guess that could be a good thing, looking back on old memories. Mostly though it just makes me sad.

Photos, journals, memories, they all hit you with this bittersweet nostalgia. Sometimes I wish I could go back in time, just to relive a particular day.

Over the past few years I’ve made connections with different people, some of whom I’ve come to genuinely care about and love. Sometimes I look at some of them and wonder if in ten years I’ll still remember their face, name, or the reason why I was friends with them. It sucks, but the fact is that for a lot of them I probably won’t.

Maybe I’m afraid of change. The more I think about the past the more it makes me dread the future. I wish it wouldn’t go by so fast. I don’t want more of my friends to graduate. I don’t want to get older. But they will; I will.

I can’t control time, no one can. So I guess all I can do is take it in while I can. The good, the bad, and everything in between.

A memory: Last night I was eating dinner with four friends. I hold an imaginary camera out in front of my face and pose, making fun of the boy sitting at the end of the table. “Hey,” he says, “you have to squint your eyes more if you want it to be accurate.” A hand smacks down on top of the table, legs kick out in front of chairs, a forefinger pushed against pursed lips reprimands us for the eruption of shrieks and giggles. We laugh so hard that our stomachs ache and tears spill out of our eyes.

I hope that I’ll remember that moment, even though it’s sort of insignificant in the grand scheme of things. But, hey, it’s the little things that count, right?

In that moment I realized that I have some wonderful, genuine people in my life, and I’m so lucky to be able to call them my best friends.

A piece of advice (for myself and whoever might be reading this): Keep picking up all the pennies you find, even if they don’t seem lucky. Everyone can use a little spare change.

Foresty

When I was little, I lived in a little house in Hadley, Massachusetts. It was in the countryside – it wasn’t cut off from civilization, but it was outside of the bustle of the town.

Three sides of my house were surrounded by a forest. That forest was my playground – I’d go on long walks with my dad, where we’d listen to the crunch of the leaves, climb on boulders, and run with my dog.

Photo Credit: images.scienceworldreport.com

My favorite part of the forest was the vine swing. About five minutes from my house grew a gigantic tree, and from the tree grew a vine that hung down, almost to the ground, and then grew back up again, forming a swing. This earth-made swing was better than any plastic playground in the middle of a busy park. This was Mother Nature’s playground, and I always felt like she made it for me.

I would play on the vine swing for hours, but when I got tired out my dad, my dog and I would venture on to the apple orchard that lay just a few minutes walk ahead.

For my younger self, this forest held everything. It was a place to play, with a million little adventures that entertained me for hours on end. I don’t know how big the forest really was, I only ever saw this one section. But through all of my adventures, I always felt like this one little part belonged to me.