Two dreams and a memory

You stood on the concourse, ready to depart

with Diesels, red hoody, and me.

But not me.

She was awkward, overweight.

“We’re going to Hawaii to think about this relationship,” you say,

arm around this other version of myself

as I stand on the curb, seeing you off.

“Verdict upon return.”

.

Years later, I entered a gallery filled with your paintings.

The air thrummed with glamorous people, admiring your opening.

I was shocked to find a piece of which I was the subject.

And I was stunning.

You greeted me, rolled up the painting, gave it to me

and disappeared.

When I tried to leave, they told me I would have to pay for it.

The price was more than I could ever afford.

.

You wrote me a poem that said,

with me you felt

something that was not loneliness.

But later I realized.

The lack of loneliness

is not the same thing

as love.

J.M. Roddy is a freelance and fiction writer living in the Seattle area. Portrait by Daniel F. Rice.

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