“It’s a rare quality to know this foreign language we speak otherwise known as the art of bullshitting. Most people never pick it up.” ~ Britney King, Water Under The Bridge
I dig and prod a little, and you tell me about your first love, Amy, and there’s nothing like the first, this I know for sure. You tell me how you met her in Sri Lanka, and I tell you I’ve never been. It’s a beautiful country, you say, and I feel silly for being the odd one out. Maybe we should go. I interrupt you and tell you this, and you smile sardonically. But I can tell you don’t think I’m crazy, and it is nice that you simply continue on with your story.
You were sixteen, she was nineteen. She was a Londoner, taking a gap year. You were there with your dad for work. Her name was Amy, and she was blonde and beautiful—worldly and, unlike you, not the least bit shy. You talked about books and far away galaxies and friends back home, everything and nothing important—existential conversation—the kind best had with strangers.
Later, under the stars, she would kiss you before slipping her hand beneath your shorts and then you wouldn’t be strangers anymore. You still remember the look in her eye when you told her you’d never. It’s better that way, she told you, and then she taught you what it means to please a woman. For six days, she was your teacher, and in the end, you say, forever your lesson. I want to hate her, and I do, but I will admit, she taught you well.
You wrote letters to each other for three years. She told you of her travels, and then her studies abroad. You told her of life in Texas. You made things up because you couldn’t stand to tell her the truth. It was one of the most creative periods in your life, you admit. You fell in love with an almost stranger and her words. You invented yourself for her, because of her, and you believed in the person she made you become. That is, until one day without warning, the letters stopped. Your eyes turn sad when you tell me how you went over and over the last letter she wrote, over the last letter you sent, trying to find something—a sign—anything to explain why she vanished from your life. But there was nothing you could pinpoint, and for this, I hate her more. Everyone needs closure, and you may have missed the point, but I surely didn’t. She knew exactly what she was doing by leaving you hanging. She was giving herself a way back in.
You can’t see this, though, not yet.
Named One of….