We might live like never before :: Under the Covers Sunday

hands

Delicate :: Keaton Henson

We might kiss,
when we are alone,
nobody’s watching,
I might take you home
.”

This song came on in the car as I drove four blocks past my destination a few nights ago. It was an old mix of mine that I had found, slid between the seats, nearly forgotten. It was unexpected, the way the song brought the sudden prickle of almost tears to my eyes. Unexpected, the way the feelings of not being good enough rushed through my veins. I try to forget the way it felt to be with him. I try to forget the short span of time we spent together, and the way it left a few new holes in my heart.

I had decided never to write about any of it again. It was not a conscious decision, though I know that the lack of words given to any of it was a feigned hope of mine to not register the damage. If I avert my eyes from it and keep walking in the opposite direction perhaps he never hurt me at all, or so I wanted to believe. But, it did hurt me, more than words can adequately express.

There was that rush at the start, so strong that it stole my breath. I was overwhelmed by it, and my initial reaction was to run. I should have run. All those words of love, they were hollow, and not a single one of them did he mean, at all. He kept me tucked behind a curtain, hidden away from his everyday life, as he told me over and again that I was special, rare, that this was something sacred, and beautiful. In all honesty, it was just a game to him, and eventually he turned his tongue and his words became intentions to make me feel as if I was in the way.

Everything I did then felt unwanted. I felt as if even my breathing was a bother to him. I would dial his number and listen to it ring a few times, half-hoping he would never answer because I could not bear to hear that sound in his voice – irritation, impatience, and that undercurrent of “why are you here again?” that was impossible to ignore. It left shards of doubt up and under my skin, a sting that grew sharper when he would still ask me to meet him somewhere, and how he would hold me in a room with the lights out, pressing me so close and whispering lies in my ears, ever refusing me any part of his real life.

The lies were just part of the game to him. The excuses of why I could never see where he lived, or why I was never welcome into his days. I was just another thing for him to keep secret, to hold in dark places and then deny later, to sing to until I started to sing-a-long, and then silence because my voice was just never in the right key. He may as well have left me by the side of the road, shivering, because that look in his eyes, that tone of his voice, when I would try to reach out, was made of middle of the night frost, and pavement skinned knees – and it left me wanting to run back home.

There was no exchange of words when he eventually went away for good. The house lights came on and he just disappeared backstage, leaving me to pick up the props and sweep clean the stage, alone. It was as if he was never here at all. The flowers he gave me, they died quickly, the Summer heat drying them up and speeding up the wilting petals that fell to the floor. The card tucked inside, it did not even bear my name, just a pet one that could be pinned to anyone, and really, I could have been anyone. I know that I meant nothing much to him really; I had meant nothing much at all.

I am fine to forget him. he never let me care enough to make him matter in some for life kind of way anyhow. I can hardly recall what his lips felt like on mine, or how the sound of his voice once made me smile. All that he left, that until I listened to this song I thought I had escaped without, is another layer of self-doubt.

It sifts through my feelings though, shakes its head in disapproval when I reach out to others, unexpectedly tripping me up when I am just being myself. I hear something come to the surface of other voices and it all rushes back, the doubt and the feeling of “you are only in the way”, and I die a little inside. I try to silence it, I try to hold my breath and believe, but even now, in the comfort of my own home, hearing this song, well, I feel it again. The tears that teased the night prior, well now they fall, and I let them come, hoping with them they will wash another layer of the pain of him away.

So why’d you fill my sorrows,
with the words you’ve borrowed,
from the only place you’ve known
and why’d ya sing hallelujah,
if it means nothing to you.
Why’d you sing with me at all?

Delicate (live) :: Damien Rice

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