we watched a man heil a cab
didn’t hail it, he heiled it, one arm up in Hitler salute,
watched him from the other side of a starbucks window,
watched it rain as hard and as fast as we sometimes talk, but we were quiet,
I feel like I’ve been in a movie all day,
I told the boy I was with.
he is the first and the only boy I have ever loved.
he is 6’3 and he has a lopsided smile. his kisses are sweet and rarely wet;
he likes good music and he’ll sing along to it when we’re in bed together;
he’s silly and he’ll sit down at my piano and start to play,
and when I say, is that Fur Elise? he’ll say, no, that’s for your mom,
and he told me I love you for the first time on the Central Park reservoir,
and he kissed me for the first time outside a party in Brooklyn,
and when I first wrote him a poem I didn’t think I’d fall in love with him,
he was the one who pointed out the man heiling a cab
the cabs are all either taken or the drivers are afraid he’s a Nazi
either way they’re all passing him by,
he’s soaking wet, and shaking the hair out of his eyes like a dog
and trying to guard his suitcase with his shoulders,
we are inside dry and drinking tea. I am 16 and he is
18. today was his last day of high school and he is technically leaving me
on August 20 something for college but in actuality
he left me a few weeks ago when he started mentally packing.
he asks me why I am smiling and I say it’s because
I’m thinking about the first time he was ever at my house, the time we watched
Midnight in Paris, and I’m thinking of him sitting on my chair, shortly after he
came over, smiling into the distance and I asked him why he was smiling
and he said, nothing, I’m just happy to see you.
I read the last six months of my journal this week. I want to read them to him.
I have been doing so much thinking about the beginning that I know this is the end.
the man puts his arm down when the light is red and it’s a lost cause for
his suitcase, and I wonder where is he going, and who he is leaving,
if she loves him, standing on 96th and Lex in his raincoat.
I am thinking about the times that we laughed about nothing or ate eggs in
my kitchen or falafel in Washington Square Park. I am thinking about the time
that we made a bet about gullible being written on the ceiling and he won so
he got to kiss me, just one kiss, but it was a million kisses,
and I am thinking about sitting next to him at 11pm in the
Hungarian Pastry Shop, drinking Darjeeling Tea and wondering if I loved him.
I am warm and dry but I feel shirt sticking to my stomach soaked but also
detached from the world, the rain, from his hand in my hand,
I feel like a million cabs are passing me by and I am smiling at every
taxi driver and they are all smiling back but they never stop.
I am kissing his cheek and trying to make a mental note about what he smells like
and he is saying, I love you, he is saying, maybe in two years you will be
where I am, brooding at Starbucks with a cute sophomore boy,
so I said, oh, do you think of me as a cute sophomore boy? and he is saying,
this moment, this moment will go down in our—maybe not literally our biographies—
but our histories, he is saying, one of us will write about this moment,
I am remembering the moment, last Tuesday, when I said
I still love you,
and he said, I love you too, but it isn’t that simple
and I said, maybe that’s why it’s different now than it was,
because it used to be that simple.
and now it is June, it is a rainy June afternoon, sticky and cold, the kind of
afternoon that disillusions me about summer, about the summer I wished for in February,
but now I wish it were February so that I could fall in love with him all over again,
but we watch the traffic and all the traffic
and we watch the man, heiling a cab, and the cab doesn’t come to him so he runs
to the cab, he puts his suitcase in the trunk and he climbs in the back, and the man
I kiss him outside the subway station long and hard but never wet
and he goes down the stairs and I cross the street to where the man had been standing,
so it goes.