A Small Heart's Tale

January 12, 2010
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I never saw it coming, and then, neither did Elizabeth. We first met in the lobby of the hotel amidst a thoroughfare of motion. At such an early time I was struck with a convulsing conflict of emotion. Elizabeth was more beautiful than any other girl I had met before. Elizabeth’s light tan complemented her golden locks while her thin smile matched the mysterious splendor in her dark blue eyes. My gaze fluttered in time with my heart. If I held eye contact too long I’d be caught staring.
But, as I found out in the following weeks, Elizabeth’s beauty was nothing in comparison to the depth of her personality. We linked well. We spent our time together in quiet conversation; our natural soft spokeness completed each other. Silence was never awkward for lack of something to say, but rather real thought that resembled our relationship.
Our friends would all make fun of us but we’d just laugh along because, we knew that none of them had felt this way. Despite what others blatantly said and jokingly hinted at, I still hadn’t given voice to my deep feelings. We both knew what we felt, but hadn’t said so. Our summer romance, many joked would be just that since I had to leave in one month.
That very day I asked Elizabeth to walk with me. The lane in front of our cozy hotel was long and quiet. Elizabeth asked me as we started why I would want to walk with her down this narrow road. My reply was simple. I thought clearly and honestly while walking. Our conversation ran its course as we savored ours’. We talked of our loving friends and how they felt about us. I didn’t want any false expectations.
As it so happened, we came to the end of our path and simultaneously both turned inward, and then stopped. Elizabeth was the first to speak as we stood transfixed. Sweetly, Elizabeth smiled and then asked me if there was anything that I wanted to say. Well, I stood there and let my mind race. Of course there were many things I wanted to say. I love you more than you and I know. Hey Elizabeth, I’ve got so much left to say. If every simple thing I said to you would take your breath away I’d say it and then even more in love with me you’d fall. Yes, we’d have it all because you’re the kind of girl that makes a man that much better.
But I didn’t say it. Elizabeth saw it in my eyes and I saw it in hers. I knew I’d missed my chance. It wasn’t my last, but it certainly was the best. The following days were filled with times like that on the road. My greater pain was this; I was called home before I wanted to.
The train station’s bright yellow paint mocked me as I drooped and saw the cold blue of the marble steps. Saying goodbye is easy, but leaving is quite hard. It is much easier to will your lips to obey than it is to will your body to obey. Our pure embrace as we left reflected our ongoing feelings. Once separated, with myself on the train and Elizabeth on the platform, our gaze locked. As the train tugged me out of the station the most beautiful thing happened. I nodded and mouthed, “I love you” and then Elizabeth, more radiant than ever, mouthed back, “I love you”. Leaving then was easy. Easy at least until I found that my aching heart drained as the distance increased. Absence makes the heart grow fonder, but then, so does presence. The bliss of our reunion will only be amplified by the ache of separation.





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