once upon a june night,

i.

i think i’m sad.

i met someone tonight. someone strange and all too familiar. i was impressed by the way you approached me and i was a little stunned by the way you acted. “i have a bottle of hennessy” and the whole time i watched the way you flipped the bottle around in your hand and the way you cusped my hand in yours when i shook your hand. i watch people hands and i like the way you express yours. and oh god, the second you came up to me, your two friends were grabbing you away from me, and you were fighting them away, and i was chuckling. they pulled you away and maybe gave you a brief pep talk i’m not sure, but you came right back with just as much firepower. and you are creating a scene and everybody has their head turned at the way you have your arm out but i refuse to grab it. my god i think i am blushing so much it’s not longer the heat, but thank god for dim lights at bars.

i think it was ten minutes in before i learned your name, which you hadn’t told me but i had asked. and i wouldn’t have asked if i wasn’t interested.

“you’re the type of girl that knows how to have a good time”

but i am sober and sipping a cup of champagne but i guess the way i’m double fisting beer and champage gives it away. and i am sitting with people i barely know and i am just here for the birthday girl, surrounded by twenty people i barely know by name, but just by proximity.

“i have to drive home, so i can’t drink”
“but if you weren’t, you would finish this with me”

i look at you inquisitively, unsure as to
what i am feeling

/

“here. if i get twelve guys, will you get up and dance. the dance floor is empty but i know you can get it started.”

and how did you know that. how did you know i bounce to an empty dance floor and do the macarana or the sprinkler or the lawn mower because i believe in being silly. and so i signal you that i’m not interested, and all these strangers around me are asking if i need help and i say i’m fine, i’m fine, i’m used to it. but i’m not, because i’m a little flustered.

and i say “if i want to go to dance. i’ll dance based on my call. not yours” and you laugh, you laugh at how sassy i am. and god i am so drawn to your smile. why is it so childlike. why is it so genuine.

why are you
so real

and you bring up each guy one by one, “i couldn’t get twelve, but here’s three” and i don’t know how i have this connection with you, but every time one of your friends comes up to introduce themselves, i shoot a look at you, hinting “really, are you really”

and to every friend of yours, i start with, “he brought you here, didn’t he” and they say no, but i’m smarter than that. what am i? some girl who you are trying to sway so you let your friends each have a turn with me. but i see you from the corner of my eye talking to your friends and pointing at me before they approach me. your intentions are so innocent.

ii.

and i am outside with a friend i just met tonight smoking a cigarette and i hear some boys holler at a girl walking right past us, and i turn to my right, and it’s you and your friends. and i stare at you again from a distance away but i know you can feel the glare and i can feel your chuckle.

“you do not treat girls like that! what are you doing?!”
“but i was nice to you, and it didn’t work, and i’m not usually like that with girls as i was with you”

i’m blushing again.

i am smoking my cigarette trying to play off that i don’t care but oh i do so much and i can tell by the way my head leans towards you. my best friend tells me i have a heart as cold as norway when it comes to boys. it’s true. but then you approached me and i felt my heart cooling down.

“what’s your last name?” you ask
“if you want to know my ethnicity, just ask” and so you do.

“i’m chinese”

and you blush. oh god, f i n a l l y. i’m just not the only one. and you begin to talk in fragmented chinese and it’s the
cutest thing
i’ve heard in a while

i am helping you complete your sentences and i can tell
that you are sobering up

sober love is a strange thing
isn’t it
at least it’s not just
me anymore

we are talking about how you lived in china for three years
but it became too expensive
and you are asking where i am from and i say
new york—

but my friend is finished with her cigarette and she is pulling me by the hand back into the bar. and i am thinking of you, i know you by these few impressions and i hooked. how did you do that.

iii.

and i am leaving with the crowd and going to another bar and we are at a club, dancing. i love clubs, my oh my, they are my thing. bars aren’t. they’re too intimate. too much conversation. i just want to dance. and i am now. and my eyes are closed and my arms are up and i’m hugging and kissing the birthday girl. and i open my eyes and you
are
there
encompassing my whole vision

and my shoulders shrug, and i am so relieved to see you there because i was hoping san jose was enough of a fishbowl to run into you again. and your friend is trying to dance with me and you are to the side. and oh god that’s adorable, the way we have chemistry but you hand me off to your friend, even though i am darting my vision towards you, and half smiling but in the inside i’m completely melted.

but my friend’s boyfriend shoos you away. that’s what they keep doing and i want to tell them it’s okay but i can’t because you’re already gone. you’re already lost in the crowd.

and i am leaving the bar and i am walking to my car and i hope to run into you. i hope to see you with your big smile and unbuttoned shirt and hear your whimsical words but i don’t. i don’t and now i’m here, home, writing this.

iv.

i’ve already made a story out of you and you’ve already had an imprint in my life and all i wanted was to hug you. i’m silly, aren’t i. but i’m the type of person that can spy chemistry in a blink and i think you knew that part of me. i’m sad because i wish i gave you my number. and i don’t ever want to give away my number. but the chances didn’t work in our favor and the night moved on before i could take a pause. and i’m the type of girl that’s always moving too fast, too much in the future, in my own head, but then i saw you and wanted to be here. savor the moment with you. and i wanted to stroke your cheek with my hands and tell you that i like the way you stand gently next to me enough so that our shoulders rub against each other. and kiss you.

i know that
although i have good intentions, my kisses
can be poison because i kiss boys
who i don’t fall for and this is a habit
i grew out of
and i also
grew up
and know that there is more to life
than kisses

but i
want to kiss you

(june 29 2013)

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