Once upon a time I kissed a girl. I met her in the park in a white shirt (you know what they say…’anything can happen in a white shirt’) and she wore a long blue button front dress with a cotton sweater tied round her hips. I’ll never forget that dress…it was spring time in the prairies six impatient love torn hours drive east and the tiny pearl white buttons went on forever like the white lines on highway 6. ‘It was a Saturday afternoon romance, between a cowboy and a fool…’, Nathalie Merchant’s ‘Tigerlilly’ drifts in and out like the mirages of still water on the straightest road between the Rockies and speeds too fast to know better.
Her pale blue eyes ‘linger on’ like an REM song before Michael Stipe cut his hair, eyes like mine…like my son’s, like my daughter’s…1600 miles and a lifetime between grey blue spendthrift reminders that send me back there, 13 years, every time I look into a mirror.
I cut ‘The Hand of God’ motif from the Sistine Chapel and cropped it to fit on the back of an envelope…what could come closer to love than touching that hand?…and imagine her walking home from work with that stolen treasure and curling up in the corner of her favorite blue sofa, the one with the huge oversized cushions where the sun warms the white plain through the panes.
Letters and words in pencil on any paper I could find…on hand made pressed linen, on pages in a blue suede Moleskine, on the inside of the label of my favorite salsa that I slipped off running hot water in the kitchen sink – wait, wait, first a corner… no, wait, don’t bend it or it will tear, more water, more time, then there, right there at the tip of my finger I feel the glue melt and the paper slide off all together intact and completely unaware that it has….shhhhhhhh…the next morning white cotton Calvin Klein’s slid off her ankles and we were lost on a mattress tossed on the living room floor in her parents empty basement suite…”Say fuck me and I’ll stop…”
Letters and dreams and the lines on prairie highways that cross forever as the north wind envelopes the horizon in a sea of white and the newspaper says a line of six cars followed the sleeping driver off the corner like the time I woke up on the passenger side in the ditch when my step-dad went off the road.The tow-truck had that musty smell of men who worked too long too hard and somehow there is always a dog in the cab to keep him company. “Don’t mind the dog.”, he says.
Random meaningless happenstance and coincidence becomes fate and every tall thin curly blond, every dress and sweater and retro red North Face fleece, every ad for Aqua Di Gio, every song on the radio, every damn post modern Romero and Juliet, everything…yes, even the pale blue reminders that can’t lie to me in the mirror, everything is her. Wait, stop, breathe…I have to be careful or I’ll fall back in …
“I thought of you as my mountain top, I thought of you as my peak…”
REM Pale Blue Eyes – Live : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nQiJZgsGFfU