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My Rugged Love Song


· poetry

Twelve years old and you found yourself praying for your future wife;

you had me in your heart even then,

the girl you hadn't met but longed to know.



It was Tuesday

a piano sat quiet on the stage, the church sanctuary dim with the shadows of a May night,

our laughing whispers the sole sound

reverberating off eclectic chairs and sloping ceilings.

Our butts, pressed to the wood of the bench, body heat intertwining

your fingers slid over the weighted keys;

music filled the room, washed over the windows, filled your eyes, moved your soul

"sing it back to me."

Pools of salt water welled on the edge of my lashes, spilling to your shoulder;

your fingers, my fingers, our fingers knotted together

our song

bringing us to the cusp

Our voices rising as fire from ashes, wistful, we released our melody to the heavens.

From the fold of the keys you lifted a ring

your hand shook, voice trembled, eyes cut me to my heart,

every moment aligning for this one question.

Our story is made of midnight talks expanding deep through the night

morning song birds telling us we forgot to sleep,

Emerson and Whitman and piano keys,

beer caps filled with cookie dough, open roads stretching wide

and Paul Cook,

our soundtrack, our midnight hour, our first kiss, our first love made.

Waiting, hoping

the candles flickered gold on the piano top, your fingers searched for mine, body reached for mine;

the space between us dissipated;

one second

one question

one breath

a tattoo over our skin and souls 


"will you be my candlelight?"



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