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Captivated

An old, beat up radio fights through a fog of static to play a dated Country song from some big city station. A fire-fly floats through long blades of timothy, intermittently illuminating your bare legs. A full moon swells behind your hands, raised so high they almost graze the stars. Your hips swing back and forth, pulling every low beat out of the music.
And I am captivated.
I didn’t want to come. I was scared of what your father would do if he found us. Scared of losing your mother’s trust. But most of all I was scared of what might happen. Of all the things I could do under the cover of night that would scare you away. Now there’s nowhere else I’d rather be.
The moths dancing in the light of your mother’s good lantern, the crooked angle of the radio antenna, the sturdy form of a rusted barn, and the distant bawling of a calf pool together making the night. But it’s you who makes it more than merely night. It’s your movements that make me want to stay. I would risk your father’s anger twenty times over if I could just watch you dance for one more song, for one more minute.
The song changes to a mournful ballad, and your arms lower and your hips slow. You reach down and tug on my hand.
“Dance with me.”
I don’t know how to say no, how to explain that I can’t dance. But I don’t have time anyways. Before I know it I am standing and you are tangling your arms around my neck. I look down to your eyes, but your eyelids are soulfully lowered and lashes block my view. Unsure of what to do I loop my arms around your waist and pull you closer.
I pray to God that I’m not messing up, that I’m not ruining a perfect moment. But then you sigh and lean your head against my chest. Instead of concentrating on where my hands are or how I move my feet, I feel myself begin to relax. We sway to and fro and my head lightens, I am dizzy. You intoxicate me.
I loose myself in the fluid movement and the way you fit perfectly in my arms. I let all my misgivings go. I met you here as an act of rebellion, now I’m here because I think I need you. I need the clay between my toes, I need this music. This song.
I know that we are listening to a break-up song, but somehow the lyrics change before they reach my ear. It feels as if we are listening to a secret song that only we can hear. A song of dancing fire-flies and moon softened fields of timothy waving like they wish they could dance too. A song that is neither contemporary nor aged; neither country nor classical.
But the song ends much too soon. It leaves an empty void, only filled by bursts of static and a cricket’s song. We keep dancing, replaying the song in our minds over again, but that only lasts for a few moments. Our feet soon cease to leave the ground and we just stand.
For the first time our eyes meet and I swear that your irises have never been so blue, your lashes never so dark. You look at me like you haven’t looked at me before. I see you through new eyes, like a drunk coming out of his stupor. I don’t know how long we stand, daring each other to make the first move, before I cautiously dip down so we are nose to nose, mouth to mouth.
The kiss is like nothing I’ve ever experienced. It’s quick but passionate, soft but strong. It aches of something more, but it isn’t. It’s the kiss of two kids who think they can be in love. For one night at least it’s the kiss of a blond-haired, blue-eyed girl in a white cotton dress and a dark-haired boy in blue jeans and a faded shirt– just two wild teenagers. It’s the best kiss I’ll ever have.
We fall asleep there on the dewy ground with only the fire-flies and the moon to watch over us, and don’t wake till the sun rises. The radio has started again and the morning D.J is already positively buzzinging with words. We clamber, using each other as support to stand on unsteady feet.
Once we’re up we stand face to face for a few awkward seconds, then you rise up on your toes and peck me on the cheek. You quickly back away, grab your mother’s dead lantern, and run barefoot to sneak back into your room before anyone notices you’re gone. I raise my hand to touch the warm spot your lips left on my face, then turn and cut across your father’s field to catch my early bus.

At school you tell your friends that you think I’m the one. I tell my friends we went further than we actually did. We’re both lying. But that doesn’t matter. No one needs to know about the country music or the kiss.
No one needs to know how captivated I am by you.




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