Oasis in the Shade

November 8, 2010
By , Montreal, Canada
I found that old picture of us today. You know, the one taken in Tunisia? There we are, in that oasis hidden in a barren wasteland of a desert, amid the greenery of palms and dates.

You’re looking away dramatically, pulling one of those ridiculous faces that kills me and only makes me love you more. I’m playing along, pouting and holding an inquisitive finger to my lips in an exaggerated manner. How many more pictures like this could we have taken if only you had let me? If only I hadn’t given up so easily? I should have fought harder…

What was I thinking when that camera lens captured this moment from long ago? Was I perhaps marvelling at how close our bodies were? My back against you, the warmth of your chest burning through me more than the Mediterranean sun ever could. Or was I hiding my pain at the reminder of your proximity? Did I know then what I know now? That the only closeness I would ever have with you would be in some stupid photograph?

Whatever my thoughts were at the time, they’re gratefully hidden behind the shade of my sunglasses.

Remember those? You loved them, whenever I wasn’t looking, you would steal them and try them on for kicks. At the time I hoped it was because you wanted me to come looking for them, come looking for you. I guess I was wrong.

And you, in the picture you’re wearing your own crappy sunglasses on your head.
Remember when we were by the shore, you put them down on the ground while you went off to explore? When you came back, they had snapped in two.

You probably don’t remember.

Well I’m the one who broke them.

I’d been watching you stumble across the rocks, trying to get as close as you could to the water. I was laughing as you struggled desperately to keep your balance and I stepped on them without realizing. When you found them, I pretended not to know what had happened, I didn’t want to give you another reason to hate me.

So there you have it.

Mystery solved.

I’m the one who broke your sunglasses.

Then again, you’re the one who broke my heart.





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