Magazine, website & books written by teens since 1989

Hello, I'm a Broken Human Magnet This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

By , Lehi, UT
We went to the park. They were glued to each other like they usually are.

I don't understand them. They don't force themselves to date each other, but they just can't seem to stay apart. Like there's some kind of magnet routed deep within them they can't turn off. It must be strong because they're almost always touching; knee to knee, hand to hand, shoulder to shoulder. A breath away.

It would make me insanely nervous to be that close to a boy, I think. What if my hands were sweaty? What if my breath smelled like garlic? I'm sure I would say and do all the wrong things. But maybe if I knew him, had gotten used to the way he smelled, and the way he talked, maybe then I wouldn't be so nervous. Maybe then
I might even like being a human ­magnet.

Anyway, as we walked, for whatever reason, she started to drift away. Wandering about, looking up at the sky, the way she does when she has a lot on her mind. Maybe he knows more about her than I thought, because he doesn't follow her. Just leaves her to herself. We walk along a little, and I feel the composure that was so hard for me to collect begin to slip away.

He makes me nervous; my heart does silly flip flops in the hollow of my chest when he looks at me.

He walks ahead and I take a shaky breath, trying but failing to remain calm. It's no good when a girl falls in love with her best friend's boy-toy.

I shake my head to clear my jumbled thoughts, and that helps a little. I look over and, of course, he's climbing the playground. Probably hoping she'll turn and see him, the show-off. Even while he's walking with me, he's thinking about impressing her.

“Monkey.”

I know it's childish. I can't help it. He's being stupid, with his stupid walk and his stupid face and his stupid cologne.

Last week I was walking through Walmart, and I swore he was in the store because one of the cashiers smelled just like him. I got all jittery and started to blush because I hadn't put on makeup that day.

It's ridiculous what this boy is doing to me. He must know – the way he smiles like he's an inch away from laughter. Not even the chuckle kind, but the full out tilt-your-head-back and guffaw at how deliciously hilarious it is. He's the devil, this boy. And he knows it too.

She comes back around, and he becomes her personal acrobat, jumping off things like it's a parkour contest. She tells him to be careful as he jumps down, and he gets this smug look on his face that says “She cares about my safety. I have succeeded in life.” I roll my eyes, knowing they'll be too busy gazing into each other's star-crossed eyes to notice. But he looks up at me for a second, and I'm stupefied; all I see is green and gold.

Green and gold like sunshine kisses in the grass, deep into summertime.

He looks back down at her and a deep aching washes over me, amplified by the scene in front of me. They kiss. Pink lips mashed together and silhouettes too pretty in the setting sun.

I almost take a picture, but I know if I did I'd probably hang it on my wall with the rest of my favorites, because it's that beautiful. And I know every time I would look at it, my mouth would get dry, the way it does when I'm trying really hard not to cry. Like right now.

I look away, swallow, take a deep breath, and start walking back toward the car. As I sit in the driver's seat, I can't help watching them. A part of me dies a little, but I just can't look away. He holds her hand with all the gentleness in the world.

I have never felt so alone in my life. Like a broken magnet, incapable of mending itself. Don't get me wrong. Being a human magnet isn't so bad, I think. It just hurts a little when the only person you ever wanted is ­already attached.

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




Join the Discussion


This article has 1 comment. Post your own!

TheWordShakerThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. said...
today at 6:51 pm:
This is beautiful. It's well-written and sad and poetic and so, so relatable.
 
Reply to this comment Post a new comment
 
Site Feedback