The Summer Garden This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

December 28, 2011
We had the prettiest garden on our block that summer. I would wait outside my house with the hose almost every day. Not wanting to look conspicuous, I would water every plant individually and make sure it was completely saturated before moving on. I figured the longer I took to water the garden, the better chance I had to see him. He had the most gorgeous tanned skin and soft, silky blond hair. His eyes were such an intense aqua-blue, you would swear he was looking into you and reading your mind. The neighbors thought I was really interested in botany. I spent extra time pulling out weeds and planting flowers just to be outside and have a chance to be with him.

Sometimes I would watch from the guest room to see if he was coming up the lane. When I saw him, I would race downstairs and, coincidentally, decide that was the perfect time to water the garden. Sometimes he raised his hand in a gesture that resembled a wave and yelled “Hey” across the manicured lawns. My heart would start racing and, bowing my head to hide my flushed cheeks, I would whisper a “Hi.” He managed to look so cool, and self-assured in his chocolate and strawberry-stained uniform from the ice cream shop as he strutted down the sidewalk. He would walk over to my steps and sit to watch me work.

Sometimes we talked about nothing, and sometimes we talked about everything. He’d tell me about his job, and I’d tell him about my garden. He had an ease about him that made it impossible to be shy.

I spent more and more time outside. He was the only one who listened to me without judging. But I was too shy to approach him on my own. I didn’t know how to walk up to him and start a conversation. So instead I made the most of the opportunities he gave me. I always tried to be witty, and show my best side. He seemed to be an angel, always the good Samaritan thinking of the other person. I had never met someone so truthful and kind. And he, open and extroverted, never needed an excuse to talk. He would stop over to say”Hi,” and see how I was doing.

As the summer wore on, he came over to my garden more often. I would stop working so I could give him my undivided attention. His trust grew as I watered and tended my garden. He started telling me about the important things in his life; how he was never in one spot for long, and how hard that was for him.

I talked to him about the important things in my life. He was so interested and I never felt like I was rambling. He made it easy to talk to him about real things like family and philosophy. But I still didn’t know how to respond to his feelings. I had never had anyone confide in me before.

After a long talk, I told him I had to eat dinner. I started busying myself with the pansies by the front tree. I dug around to check for weeds, then patted the soil back with new potting soil and watered it. I turned to him and he reached across my arm and turned off the gardening hose. “Just listen,” he smiled as he stood up. “Oh, and one more thing,” “What?” I asked naively. He came over and looked in my eyes. “This,” he said as he kissed me.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.

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This article has 3 comments. Post your own now!

Eatsshootsandleaves said...
Jan. 5, 2012 at 12:37 pm
This is beautifully written and you could just imagine it all happening in your head which made it even more effective :) Great story!
otherpoet said...
Dec. 30, 2011 at 10:58 pm
super-duper sweet! This was well written, and the story was timeless :) Keep writing!
songofsongs said...
Dec. 29, 2011 at 6:55 pm
really cute...every girls dream! especially liked the ending!! keep up the writing!
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