here is a first date

Here you are sitting across from me. A cup of shaved ice flavored white with some “Jamaican rum” syrup (which tasted a little like stale Pina colada)  sat in front of you, melting into sticky sweetness like I was while watching you fish out a Jenga piece from the tower.  Your face was as steady as your hands, eyes and fingers concentrated. The tower nudged towards me but it never fell. I scowled with a smile. You smiled back in defiance. This was a game, and we were in love. I pulled a piece from a side of the tower because I always play to win. You, in all your clever gracefulness, slipped one out from another side. The tower balanced precariously on center pieces. We looked at each other with eyes that smirked and hearts racing to our necks. Almost too quickly the night turned six and murmured time for me to go. We left like the unhappy kids who sat jealously at the table beside us (except we were unhappy because we had to leave). No one won, but I sat next to you with your hand in mine and my hand in yours in the car. We kissed under the dull red glow of the stoplight, but for a brief moment your green shirt looked like the bright green of a “go” signal. We tasted like the botched flavors of alcoholic drinks turned into sugary candy, but you felt like warm effervescence sliding drunkenly into my stomach. There were butterflies there. They’ve gotten ahold of some nectar and they’re fluttering for more.

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c.v. grace

here lies my veins, tangled and suffocating.

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