Waiting for Catherine
I'm sitting next to the window biting my lower lip while she's bent adjusting the delicate black line that runs down the back of her hose starting at her heel then disappearing under the folds of color just below her knee. This is our routine. She does the living while I do the dreaming, waiting for the day I finally grow into my own life, waiting for the day I stop running and realize sitting by the window will never be enough. I can't help but watch her, mesmerized by the attraction of a woman who knows the power of her own life. I know she feels my stare but she doesn't mind if I watch her dress, she likes the way I memorize the curve of her hip, the bow of her back. She looks over, catches my eye and I quickly turn my head, embarrassed, shy, intimidated by the gaze of someone I don't understand and sometimes fear, afraid that in that split second she's read every thought I've ever tried to push away--every thought about dancing too close to strangers when someone's waiting for you at home, every thought about sex for no other reason but to hear yourself breathe, every thought about the lies we tell ourselves to keep from feeling alive, every thought about what it must be like to step into her skin--awake, alive, passion amplified. “Too much…” is what they must whisper behind her back, “too much...” But I secretly wish for one moment of being too much. She walks across the room with a seductive sway, an inviting smile, and I know I'd do whatever she wanted in order to keep her from going too far away. She brushes my bangs off my forehead and I swear for a moment I see myself in her eyes and if I am there, lost in all that brown, then I know she's read every story tucked away in the corners of my mind. Saying nothing, she stands and walks away while I stay where I always stay, where I think it’s safe, just out of life’s reach, on the other side of the door, waiting--waiting for her to come back with stories to be turned into poems, waiting for that moment when hunger and prayer consume the fine line that separates the living and the dreaming and keeps me one breath away from drowning in the scent of ginger she leaves behind.