I guess, I think… She has changed everything about me. I met her a few years ago when I was stationed in Paris for the National Guard. She was strikingly charmed by my attire; I had no regalia, but pink skin which shown through at the neck, to my head, and at the cuff of my uniform. She laughed, at first I thought, because she was amused, but later I figured she laughed because she lacked words and empathy.
I asked her for coffee the moment I met her. She declined. I went around for a week thinking about her. After a week and a few days I went back to the same street market I had met her at, one of those fruit stands, and she was there. I figured she didn’t work, she had very beautiful hands. Self absorbed enough to not have a job. Sign number one of what was to come. I could work my hardest and not produce enough to keep the love around, the love I found.
I had prepared a poem for her and carried it in my pocket the whole week before, just in case our paths crossed. It may have been burning a hole in my pocket, maybe it should have. I saw her standing in the same spot, blue dress clad, snug, blond hair, green eyes. She noticed me walking up right off. One awkward step at a time. I lumbered in pain and anxiety. I should have been walking in the other direction. Hind sight is 20/20. I greeted her, she did not seem offended. I then told her to read my poem and meet me at the Lux Cafe in one hour if it meant anything. I wrote the poem months earlier for a professor I had and I kept it locked in a folder, in a black bureau in the back of my office.
The Professor Beth McClean taught an International Communications class. I would have given her my poem at the end of the semester but she had been killed in a car accident; she was crushed to death by a Fed Ex truck while she walked on the outskirts of campus. The truck was carrying books for our class that Professor Beth had ordered for us weeks earlier. The truck driver was running late and missed a stop sign searching for coffee, he had been up for a few days and only stopped after he had heard the bump and the truck jolt up and down as it broke bones and stopped blood flow. I guess someone saw and screamed. There was blood on the spot where she died for hours. I walked past it on the way home from class, or the class that was canceled. My note never reached her.
An hour and ten minutes later the girl I gave the poem to walked up. She was wearing white gloves, which covered her perfect fingers. I envied her neatly manicured hands because mine were ragged and sore. She walked up smiling, asking me if I had forged this poem from another writer, someone that had skill. I said no, it is mine, and now it is yours. She gave me a smile. We chatted and drank coffee. She told me to stop biting my hands. I told her I was nervous. She asked why? I told her I was nervous of her beauty and I was surprised she had taken up my offer. I put my hands down and we talked until the sun went down. She told me we should do it again sometime. I agreed, and that is how it all started.
She told me her name was Malia. I told her my name, Jacob Carter Thomas… So I guess this is how it all began.