I live a double life, double love life, both existing together, sometimes parallel, occasionally overlapping. I’ve spent years chasing the memory of Joe, whilst still living a perfectly normal exterior life, my emotional arena has been in constant shift, sometimes in the now, often in the past or an imagined possible future, the one where I find Joe again.
Memory is a wonderful thing. Like a shadow reflected along the path, longer where it shouldn’t be, reflecting things bigger than they are. Then with the sun behind a cloud, gone; the path smudgy grey with the left behind scuff marks from wheeling bikers.
My recollection of Joe is grainy, certain things clear as a summer day, and others fogged with passed time. The hint of a certain cologne sends my head spinning back to the time when the weatherman forgot to tell us about an up coming hurricane and the unforgettable night that followed. The shadow of a candle lit face in a bar, cigarette in hand, smoke obscuring the eyes sets my heart racing in the hope of a fateful chance meeting sending us off again on that wild tangent that was our romance.
Crowded places offer me a million opportunities in countless faces to see him again, the swing of a raincoat or the sound of a voice could all be him. Trips to London offer tantalising half glimpses of my nearly-Joes as I search every upward and downward approaching face on the underground escalators, never giving up on the idea that I’ll get lucky, hoping that this time he might be there, destiny offering that crucial reunion.
If a person’s really looking it’s amazing how many could - be places there are to find someone. I know I’ll find him. Just as fate initially crossed our paths, so fate will offer us that same chance again.
I imagine my heart to be tattooed with a thousand million little initials, like school kids draw on their desk - JP luvs SE. Each heart beat reverberating the love, echoing the pattern of our initials on and on, just like my search for Joe, goes on and on.
When I find him again, all I want to do is hold him, ask him if he can find it in his heart to love me again. Tell him that I’ve stopped settling for second best, and that I was a fool to ever think that he was anything else but the best.
I am propelled by the hope that his heart beats to the same rhythm as mine, and that when fate crosses our paths we can make a better job of it than last time. And until then, I carry on with my parallel life, heart beating in two directions at once.
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