Strolling along under the Brooklyn Bridge and it’s
Illuminated by the effervescent glow of Wall Street as the East River laps against the docks
The wind a whisper of winter’s return, but the chill a welcome guest
I can taste the crisp in the air, made bitter by the silence of your call
But all that matter is the lights, colored little orbs that outline the path to Brooklyn, my new home
And though it’s evening, it dawns on me…
I don’t even know your favorite color.
Sometimes there is no reason
to love who you love
to be who you’ve become
but you do anyway and I
want to want
want you to want it too
maybe it’s not soulmates
not destined for glory,
but I don’t believe in fairytales
I could believe in you if only
you’d want me to
here is the thing…
you’re in my head, my heart, my soul
it hurts the marrow in my bones
and maybe it’s not you at all
rather the idea of it —
love at first laugh, I mean.
It got to be so bad, didn’t it?
All the anger and fights
fleeing, and the time I yelled at you
to get the fuck out of my car.
But I mostly just remember instead
the silent way the snow fell as we
on the nineteenth of December.
I owe Kristen Black ten dollars.
It’s stupid. She was a girl in my global history and cultural perspectives seminar freshman year. We went on this field trip to the Cloisters–this fortress-like church on the edge of the Hudson River. It was a beautiful place, exceptionally so in the fall, as all the crispy orange and red leaves fell from the side of the cliff overlooking the water. I remember thinking it was such a monumental graceful holdout, the kind that makes you marvel. But our class was there to debunk God. It was odd, I always thought, because it’s the sort of landscape you expect God had to have touched.
But there is no God, and I owe Kristen Black ten dollars.
I borrowed the money because we had to pay cash at some decrepit burger joint in Penn Station. It was such a typical New York thing, to require patrons to pay cash. I love to hate that. Everyone who loves New York loves to hate it.
I forgot about that for five years. It’s been five years since I borrowed ten dollars from Kristen Black. For some reason, I remember that. The last time I saw her she was walking hand-in-hand with her girlfriend on campus senior year. We made passing eye contact. The first thing I thought was, “Wow, I’m an incredible dick. I still owe her money.” In all honesty I doubt she remembers that. I bet she has no more than a hazy notion that we took a class together once freshman year. But I am ten dollars indebted to her, whether or not she cares.
Today, Kristen Black added me on LinkedIn. That’s why it’s relevant. She works at NBC, and we both majored in communications. There is no way she cares that I owe her ten dollars. I don’t expect to wake up tomorrow with a message in my inbox that reads, “Can you please give my ten dollars back?” The simple fact is, I’m a lunatic, and she is most likely not.
That’s the problem with memory. It sticks, like the weirdest, worst glue–trapping all the shit and fuzz and nonsense that rubs over it. It is absurd to care that I still owe Kristen Black ten dollars. But this glue is holding strong.