By: Dwayne Parton

My Four Letter Word

I’ve paced back and forth today. She’s coming. She’s coming to my house for the first time. I’ve already laid claim to the couch and my bedroom has to be perfect…well, clean. I bought new sheets and washed the comforter. My dog sleeps with me every night, it doesn’t gross me out but she can’t sleep in a bed like that. I’ve vacuumed and cleaned the essentials thoroughly ie(the bathroom). It’s nothing fancy, the little single wide that I live in, but it’s my home and she’s coming.

We talk on the phone almost every night, and not about lovey dovey things about life, and the answer to the ultimate question in life. Which if you must know, spoiler alert, is 42. She notices things others don’t, the little subtleties. Shes the girl who sees a tiny convenience that will make someones life just a little better but they might not ever notice. And that’s ok. She goes about her business, and it’s ok that her subtlety goes unrecognized. To her that’s the beauty of it. Sometimes I wonder if she conscious of her actions.

We left at 10am. Well 10am in my book means 10:30am or 11:00am. Ok, we left at 11:00am. My fault. I forgot a few chores, and had to pack. Finally on the road. I started off driving. She’s beautiful. I want to hold her hand, but not sure that she’d like to hold mine. We bantered a little back and for but each of us remained completely separate on our side of the car. There was an invisible boundary. Her hand was so close, but impossible to reach. Home is wherever I’m with you. Song playing on radio when she broke the barrier.

It was a lovely time. Listening to music and driving.

We set up camp. I’m not too tired. 11:11 make a wish. “A kiss” What did you wish for? I can’t tell you. Something good? Yeah.

I sit in the tent beside her. She’s beautiful. Wrapped up in her sleeping bag. I put my arm around her, kiss her cheek. Is it bad to want to kiss her.

We share a coffee. Peruvian medium blend from Loves cream but no sugar. The coffee is in my cup holder. Every time she takes a sip she turns the cups spout towards me while I’m driving. I’m not sure she does it on purpose but she’s like that. She’s observant so it wouldn’t be a surprise.

I like that when I touch or hold her she doesn’t flinch. She makes me feel trusted.

My head races through words I’m not ready to say. Not because I don’t feel them but because saying them adds weight, expectation. If I say three words to you, I…Love…You, then your are expected to respond in a way that you may or may not feel. It’s different to. It’s very special what I feel but I’m reserving those words for another time.

Her kiss is like honey. Slow sweet and gently. It’s hard to describe the bugs churning in my stomach. I like that. Bugs, churning. It’s such a anti-romantic way to say I have butterflies. Is it bad to find humor in such things. She is like a sun beam in the morning, lazily peaking it’s way through the blinds only visible bc of the dust in the air.

It’s hard to not stare at her. When to not stare. She catches me looking at her which might be the best part. She’s beautiful but it’s that look she gives me. That one. Beautiful eyes, beautiful smile. I feel a little lost for words. You are beautiful seems to be all I can muster.

There is a feeling I can’t explain. Something she does to me. When she smiles, we we kiss, when our eyes meet. I’m still staring at her.

She’s so beautiful. I find myself needing to tell her that over and over. Now I ask the question “have I told you that you’re beautiful, pretty, gorgeous, radiant” “no” she says gently with a smile. That smile gets me. “You’re so pretty!” Comes out again and she cocks her head to the side and smiles.

Every day I wake up finding her more beautiful than the day before. Is that normal? An undiscovered freckle. A new vein of color revealed in her eyes. I’m getting sappy. She does that to me.