Magazine, website & books written by teens since 1989

"...Like the Smell of Cotten Candy."

I tilt my head back, and close my eyes. I don’t bother breathing deeply and slowly, I have been trying that for days and it has done nothing to ease my anxiety. I hear him quietly take the seat beside me on the bench; our bench. The park is peaceful this time of day, when the sun is lazily falling and the breeze is cool. I don’t open my eyes or speak, because if he didn’t have something important to say he wouldn’t have come. The words just on the tip of his tongue must be profound, and genius, and something no one has ever said before; words with the power to change everything. I wait, because words like that must be worth waiting for. Finally (with a sigh heavier than he could ever convey) he speaks; his voice reminds me of so many whispered punch-lines, promises, I-love-you’s.
“I don’t know what to do.” He breathes; staring out like the answer is just beyond reach. No, those were not the words I had hoped for, in fact, they sounded terribly familiar. I open my eyes; the sky—as I see it through the leaves and branches—looks like a puzzle piece; I focus on that. “Don’t you have anything to say?” The words are muffled, like they’re a formality. Of course, I have nothing to say, nothing useful anyway. But I did have things to say: I love you. I want all this to go away. I want to go back. I wish we never had to leave this park bench. All those things were just hopes and dreams, and wishes; they wouldn’t change anything. So I said something else… “Do you remember that carnival we went to? Back in October?” his lips curve up into the smallest of smiles. “Yeah, upstate? How could I forget?” He answers. I glance at the ground, and say “The sound of laughter, the ringing and screams of the rides, the feel of your hand in mine…, the smell of cotton candy?” he makes a noise I think is a laugh. “And we had to sleep at that little motel off the highway!” He recalls. I let myself smile at the memories, as we both fall silent. After a few moments, I feel tears swell in my eyes, but I hold them back. He takes my hand gently, and the words begin to pour out of me. “I know what we have to do! And I know there are no real options here. I know that we could wish and dream for lifetimes and it would never change what happens next! But… I still love you…” I look up into his face; press my palm to his cheek. “I still love you like the smell of cotton candy.” A single tear escapes from his eye, and I realize my own tears have dampened my face. Somewhere on the street behind him, a car horn honks. He glances over his shoulder, and says “I have to go.” He presses his forehead to mine. “I know.’ I choke out, not meeting his eyes. “Say you’ll see me later.” I beg him. He cups my face in his hands.
“I don’t want to lie.” His voice is broken. I meet his eyes. “So don’t.” I whisper. He kisses me; slow tender, like he’s afraid we’ll both crumble. “I’ll see you later.” Is the last words he ever says to me, and we are both thankful for the lie.





Join the Discussion

This article has 1 comment. Post your own now!

-DreamForever- said...
Aug. 28, 2011 at 11:51 am
That was so sweet. I just want to know why he had to leave! 
 
bRealTime banner ad on the left side
Site Feedback