‘I’m sorry’ flashed on my screen, a WhatsApp notification from you.
I gripped my phone a little harder as my eyes betrayed me by forming a layer of tears. Again I was struck by how easily you get me, how it seems you fill the spaces I didn’t know were there, waiting for you.
I searched for the pique that had simmered in my mind when I wrote the sentence that had come before your apology, it wasn’t there. What I found instead was a mass of goo in the place I’d been accused of carrying stones, and because Lagos traffic is the worst place to get mushy, I put on my headphones and selected John Legend on my playlist. That was a mistake.
Did I tell you how I had the biggest crush on John until he betrayed me and got married? I thought listening to my old crush would cover your face in my mind’s eye, I was wrong. The first song was Love Me Now, as I listened I fought the urge to send it to you. It felt right, if I could write like you, I would have written something similar, something that put my heart on paper and then song.
The first time I heard John Legend was in my living room as a teenager, I knew about him but I hadn’t heard any of his songs. Used to Love You came up on MTV Base and I was transfixed, I couldn’t move until the video ended. That’s how I feel every time I think about the tenacious, climbing parasite the world would call ‘Us’, defying gravity and a few laws of physics and of common sense.
Sometimes, I want to wrap myself around you so tight that like two mating vipers, our skins will fuse and our glued skin would keep us together until our fickle hearts find wings again. How did you find my heart, hidden under layers of dust and grime, forgotten by all, even me? Was it on those nights with your fingers roaming the hills and valleys of my body or before then, with the long phone calls as you zigzagged maps and pretended to eat airplane food- I wonder though, how your muscles bulge when you feed them with the portion of three tiny birds.
Speaking of roaming fingers, I miss gasping your name as you take me from one plane of delight to the next. I want to wake up to find my right hand searching for you, just before you flip me over and walk with me on the field of stars you built our tent in. I miss you at times you shouldn’t be running laps in my mind, I miss you in crowded bus and in quiet of my room, I miss you until every man your skin tone looks like you. I miss you even though tomorrow holds more goodbyes than hellos, I miss the little things. Sugar’m, I miss the dazzling wonders.
While all we might be are twin bubbles dancing on the edge of a quivering needle, with our final destiny an outburst of colour as our skins rupture. Let’s not forget two bubbles never stick together and no one has seen two dancing bubbles before. Who cares if we smash our hearts on the edge of Kilimanjaro, that’s tomorrow’s headache, isn’t it?
I don’t care who’s kissing you when I’m gone, love me now, fiercely.
As always, For S.