The weight of your guitar caused me to lean slightly. I laughed at you fumbling the key in the lock of the hotel room door. You turned and giggled and then dropped the key at my feet. If I’d have known what was about to happen, I might of thought you to be nervous. As it was, I felt apprehension. I’d never been this intimate with you. And I was very aware of it. I was about to cross the threshold of your private space. Up until this point, I was only an observer…watching you on a stage. Well, watching you on many different stages in as many different towns so maybe observer is too indifferent but our friendship had it’s boundaries set around your music and talent – the performer and the fan.
You said ‘thanks for lugging my shit all this way’. I said ‘it is no problem’, and ‘it’s not like I have far to go, I am just in the next room’. She said, ‘I know and how weird is that?’ I was thinking to myself that I was being offered a favor of magnanimous proportion. Maybe not god but some higher power working it’s voodoo and I should be thankful. I mean what were the chances that we would be in the same hotel in this big city and that my room on the fifth floor would be the door right next to yours.
When you asked me to stay for a bit, I said, ‘of course’. Maybe I said it too enthusiastically but how could I refuse. I was where I have dreamed of being for so many years. We laughed at the TV; shared some funny stories and then you let me strum your favorite and most precious guitar – blond, lean and soft with the cool steel strings, so much like you not only in name. You showed me some fingerings and it was all so sexy. When you moved my fingers on the frets in the different places, I was flying. I could only look at you. Everything else was automatic. I wanted to stay in that place forever. I wanted to find the void in time that would allow me to be sitting with you and you have your fingers and hand on mine. I would sit forever and adore you.
The me that is me kicked in and my mind regained control. I knew I had to go. I couldn’t be this accessible, this devotion was sure to show itself and then all would be lost. Your boundaries would reappear and I would once again be held at arms length. So, I thanked you for the attention and the fun evening. I stood, placed the guitar back its case and closed the lid.
I turned before the door and then you did that thing you did so long ago that first captured my heart. You laced you fingers in mine and placed your forehead on my own. You said something that I think was ‘thanks again’ but I couldn’t hear anymore so I closed my eyes hoping to regain some sense of control. I don’t know what you thought then but what you did stole all my senses and left me completely raw. I felt the softness of your mouth. Your lips were cool and butterfly soft. I opened my eyes but yours were closed. I watched you raise your hand to my cheek and I met it there with my own. I took my other hand and slid it under your arm around your waist. My hand and fingers rested firmly against the muscles of your back. The harder you kissed me, the tighter I pulled you to me. I was afraid for you to stop. Afraid that if our lips parted then reality would rush in and remind you. But it didn’t. You eased my coat from my shoulders and you were unbuttoning you own shirt before mine even hit the floor. I smiled as I heard the pearl snaps pop one by one. For a moment the refrain of ‘it’s a pearl snap shirt’ repeated in my mind. I reached up and pulled the last two myself and you smiled.
When you pulled away I was afraid again but you let the shirt slip slowly from your shoulders. I reached out with both hands to the button of your jeans. There you were standing before me in your bra and jeans undone. I wanted you so much it was all I could do to remember to breathe. You then said as much out loud.
What I have left out belongs only to me.
I laid beside you and stroked your hair. Strands stretched out longer than my arm. I’d never held hair so long. Your back was tucked against my chest. You were breathing evenly but I could tell you were not asleep. I was sure when you whispered ‘thank you.’ I laughed and said ‘no, THANK YOU.’ You turned to face me. You were laughing too. ‘No’, you said, ‘thank you’, and you kissed me tenderly. We were quiet for a minute I suddenly knew that this was to be all it would ever be so I said, ‘you needn’t worry, this is just between you and me.’ You nodded. Nothing else needed to be said. It was all clear.
I asked, ‘would you like me to go?’ You said, ‘no.’ I stayed long enough for you to fall asleep. I slipped out leaving you a note. “Thanks, ‘ I said. “You are an incredible woman. I’ll see you somewhere down the road.’ And I will.