To my wife:
I remember our first date.
I remember you being late and rushing in the door of the bookstore like a gust of wind.
I remember you laughing and me smiling, not really sure what to make of you but thinking I would like to know more.
I remember walking to the pizza shop that sat at the top of the hill where we ate cheesesteaks and french fries.
I remember how quickly you handed over the money for your half of the bill as if you didn’t want strings, even for a few seconds.
I remember your big, brown eyes, bright and curious like a raccoon’s.
I remember your mask, too, and wondering what was underneath it.
I remember you letting me buy you a beer at that old bar down the street.
I remember sitting on the bench back behind the shops at the end of the night. The small patch of green grass an island for two. “Can I give you a hug?” you had asked, and I said you could.
I remember how you smelled like flowers and patchouli and how hard you hugged me like you were trying to tell me one last thing before we parted and went our separate ways.
* * *
This was from an exercise in today’s writing group. W’s birthday is on Friday, so I thought I’d post today as a small pre-birthday gift. What do you remember about a first date? First love? Start with “I remember” and see where it takes you.