I’ve wanted this, before. Forever, maybe. Even when I wasn’t sure how.
Because under yellow streetlamps the worst moment of a life seems jaundiced…unforgiving and permanent and frightening, and I’ve known enough things to know what that is. Under yellow streetlamps the truth of things is pointed out and certain without really needing a second look, a double take, a leaning in and squinting sort of confirmation.
I’ve wanted this, before.
When I had other things around my finger, and other arms wrapped long around me, I wanted the wind of happy breathlessness that I had heard existed. That other fit was some different kind of tight and some different kind of binding. Some different thing that had me glancing behind at the road I’d just traveled to make sure there weren’t any rules broken, any sign of misstep, some different thing that had me holding my breath until I was certain it was safe to exhale. But I’m finding now I’d rather look ahead at these new roads of possibility, and I’d rather be reminded every time my breath happily leaves my lungs that I’m safely and loosely accounted for. Forever, maybe.
And I’ve wanted this before.
Because I’ve always loved Monet, and I’ve found that loving him and not having breathless romance seems to be lying to myself. There’s something misty eyed in it, and some overflowing soul that forced a brush to paper in that certain hazy way that makes me think, to look it over honestly, I must have known fullness at some point. Full and overflowing with this much too much emotion that makes me sure that this was right and waiting here for me to notice.
Even when I wasn’t sure how, I wanted this.
I felt like it existed and I often wondered If, when I reached out my hand, I would grab hold of rich and forbidden fruits. Burgundy love. Sea foam happiness and cherry blossom hope. Girlish excitement and grown up endearment and the possessive form of things that makes me know that he is mine instead of someone else’s. Solidly mine. Happily mine like I am happily his, and I might’ve had irritation with that before, like a vague sense of feminism and rebellion claiming quietly that I was only my own.
But I’ve found that I like the sparkle of possession on my hand, this time.
And I like forever, maybe, because I’ve wanted this before like all along, even when I wasn’t sure how. So I buy myself a print of Monet’s Wheatstacks and feel my soul overflow hazily into the world like slowly spilling paint. My much too much emotion has made me sure that this is right.
And it was waiting here for me to notice, all this time, under certain yellow streetlamps.
Truth and breathlessness and these roads of possibility that stretch so long and bright ahead of me that I think they must go on and on forever, maybe. And he is finally, certainly, solidly mine.