Posts Tagged Relationships
I worked on this piece in a Creative Writing course a few semester’s ago and I have decided to go ahead and let it out into the world.
For your reading pleasure. . .
For 19 of her 22 years of life, her only constant was the shade of a mango tree on the side of her abuela’s home in South Florida. In a place where residential developments were plastering over seas of green grass and gravel roads were becoming four lane highways, the shade from that tree provided her with more than relief from a sun that poured rays of blinding light and suffocating heat.
The shade from the mango tree was her everything. She would lie on the plush green bed of grass and stare up at the long leaves that masked the sun and the mangoes that would fall to the ground when they were oto ripe to han on to the tree any longer and escape.
So this is how it ends
This is where it all goes down
This is what “I don’t love you” feels like
It ain’t the middle of the night
And it ain’t even raining outside
It ain’t exactly what I had in mind
At a red light in the sunshine
On a Sunday
Nothin’ to say
Don’t even try
It’s been exactly – yes, even down to the minute – five days since everything happened. I haven’t had much time to just sit down and think about what’s happened. Well, I have thought about it, but not on my own. I have been reminded about our relationship at red lights, while getting into my car, while watching a YouTube video about a father-daughter duo, and even at what was once my haven – the baseball stadium.
But want to know the worst part?
Feelings change. Memories don’t.
June 2010 – I open the door and she turns from her brother to look at me. At first her eyes are wide because who would enter her home without even knocking? Not even my Bella (mom) would do that. Then her eyes softened. . .even smiled. . .when she saw me. I only stopped by to make sure she knew which medicine she was suppose to take since my Tia had left the day before. I check the bottle in her hand and tell her I’ll get going. . .then she opens her arms for the first time without me initiating it. . .and hugs me.
January 2006 – I’m sitting on the ground next to the lockers looking out at the courtyard as rain pours before a doubleheader varsity soccer game at my high school. Everyone always goes to buy food from good ol’ McDonald’s or BK before games. The girls are on the other side of the courtyard and I just don’t feel like taking the long walk to the other side. He comes walking up and stoops down to my level. We talk about the rain. We talk about how I’m quiet. We talk about who is better at soccer. He gets up to leave so that he can go grab food before the game. I watch him walk away with that light as air pace.
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It is 4 am on Valentine’s Day and I am faced with the ending credits of “P.S. I Love You” and a silver bowl smeared with chocolate with a few kernels of popcorn at the bottom. The Starbucks Mocha Frappuccino carton is empty and sitting in my sink. I am depressed about Valentine’s Day. I never thought it was going to happen. Right after Christmas my favorite holiday is Valentine’s Day. I am addicted to the insane amount of red and pink at every store I walk into. . .even the gas station with its little display of an 8-count box in the shape of heart with chocolate. I love the absolutely ridiculous balloons with frogs declaring their love in big, bright letters. I enjoy the romantic movie marathons on every channel with the women between 18-40 demographic. . .except for today.
A few of my dear friends, primarily Priscila and Desiree, use a term to describe what I like to refer to as my “Mexi Moments.”
Now these Mexi moments are always triggered by a dear Puerto Rican friend and often take place after I have just listened to some good ol’ Vicente Fernandez, or Ramon Ayala on the VERY Mexican nights. What leads to those musical choices? Love.
Nothing more. Nothing less. Have I been in love multiple times? Nope. Just once. Yet, I still feel the urge to blame that four letter word for my need to run to mi esquina. I blame this on being Mexican. We are emotional and we know it. Whether it be pure joy after a promotion at work or pure misery after a break up…we are emotional. What better emotion to shoulder the tears rolling down my cheeks (I’ve learned to invest in the best waterproof eyeliner) than love? Everyone claims to have felt it at one time or another, so I believe it is completely relate-able…and people tend to slip sympathy my way instead of just plain dirty comments about being Mexican 😉
Do I mind being told, “Ash, you’re acting Mexi again” when I get those sad eyes when I let my mind wander to a distant memory of that one guy, or many guys, I let get away? Do I mind glares from best friends as I play Vicente Fernandez’s “Volver, Volver” on our way out to latin night at our favorite spots? No. Why? ‘Cause I’ve found myself more times in mi esquina than wandering around outside of it.
Oh, and the origin of esquina? One night, after some help from a dear Puerto Rican friend, I was separated myself from the group and sat out on the steps of an apartment building around 3 am. After being coerced back into the apartment, I was sent to the kitchen…a corner of the kitchen to be exact. That was my first night in mi esquina.
Y volver, volver, volver a tus brazos otra vez,
Llegare hasta donde estes
Yo se perder, yo se perder, quiero volver, volver,