Full Moons and Fickle Hearts

Full Moons and Fickle Hearts

“I saw you there the first night, and I wanted to know you. Ask my roommate. I said, that girl dancing, I need to know her. Then you came again last Sunday and I couldn’t believe it. I was nervous. It took me a couple of drinks to gain the courage to talk to you. I don’t even remember what I said.”

“You sat down next to me and I complemented your tattoos. Tattoos aren’t my thing. But you have one of a tree on your forearm that reminds me of home. It’s beautiful and detailed and real.” I traced his forearm with my index finger.

“And you have another tree on your leg, a Truffula tree. Dr. fucking Suess. It took me a few minutes to notice that one too, but once I did I thought to myself ‘shit. this guy might actually understand.’”

He laughed. He didn’t understand.

“Then what did I say?”

“You showed me the other one you have on your chest. A girl’s name. Jade. Inside a heart on top of your heart. Then I ate the pickles off of your dinner plate.”

“I’m sorry. Did I tell you the story behind that?”

“Sort of, but I was a bit distracted by the dancing.”

“Well…”

“Shhh. Here, hold on. I have this thing in my purse. Here. Write it in here.”

I sat there for a couple seconds watching him write an answer to a question I wrote in one of the notebooks I carry around.

‘Where do you envision yourself in ten years?’ A popular prompt amongst those pages.

“Can I include you in this?” He asked before writing.

“No fucking way.” I said.

He laughed, then continued to write. And I watched his face. I watched the confusion turn into determination as he sorted out what his ink stained chest REALLY wanted.

“I feel like I was meant to meet you.” He said.

“Probably.” I put the notebook back into my purse, then got up to leave.

***

I woke up today more than once. It’s hard to wake up and stay awake when your body has been under as much stress as your mind. It was raining so that didn’t help. But eventually, something made me get out of bed and try again. It could have been all of the unanswered text messages I had from Susie, or it could have been the full moon.

“We are going to do a full moon ritual around 8:00 P.M,” my roommate told me sometime during the day in between sleeping.
“You’re more than welcome to join.” She said.

I’m not referring to Michael Tree, obviously. I’m referring to another roommate–one that I’m grateful to know. She is one of those individuals that possesses as much beauty on the inside of her as she does when she walks through a room. One of those people who you don’t have to interrogate with questions to find out their goodness because with a simple conversation, you already know.

“How long does it take? I’m supposed to be somewhere at 9.”
“Five minutes. Not even.”

So I put on my boots and felt the southern air for the first time in forty-eight hours. It feels different after the rain. I prefer it this way.
We sat in the back yard on three stools leaning against a man-made bar. Michael Tree probably made this bar. Or he probably didn’t at all.

“Write down all of the things you wish to be free of, the things you want to leave behind. Then write ‘And so it is’ at the end” My roommate said.

After a day and a half of sleeping this is exactly what I should be doing. Writing.

“We will burn them in the fire after.”

I wrote for a while and kept looking at the sky. How could the sky be lit with colors like that when I haven’t seen the sun in two days? I wrote of the things I wish to leave behind and we folded our papers before discarding them into the flames.
We finished the ritual and the fire still burned.

“I can’t believe how much this is burning. It’s powerful.” My roommate said.
“I think I fucked up and used too thick of paper.” I said.

Really I knew that had nothing to do with it. The flames had already consumed the paper. It was the words that wouldn’t give up.

***

“Let me walk you to your car if you’re leaving.”

He’s a southern gentleman, that’s for sure. A 6’7 southern gentleman with tattoos and a broken heart. He called me ma’am a couple times. I told him he better quit that. I’m not a ma’am.

“You don’t have to, my car is right over there. I’m a big girl.”

He started walking me anyway, then he asked,

“Can I take care of you?”

“No.” I said.

“Can we take care of each other?”

It took me longer to answer this one because that is the reason we’re all here. To take care of one another.

“No.”

“What are you going to do here alone? Why are YOU here, then?” He was angry.

I reached my hand up toward his chest and traced at the spot through his shirt,

“To write my name on some shit without making anyone bleed…and to fucking dance” I said.

Then I got on the freeway to return to my room in a junkyard house somewhere in the ghetto of Asheville. Keith is a nice guy. For a moment, I was starting to believe I have a fickle heart. He made me realize that’s not the case. There’s nothing wrong with allowing a person to open up. There’s nothing wrong with giving someone the chance to speak. It’s what we all need most times. On rare occasion I will fall in love with someone and their words. The reason it never stays that way usually has nothing to do with me at all. It’s never been a fickle heart’s fault. It’s always been Murphy’s Law.

That’s a relief. I was beginning to feel like a terrible person. I kept driving on  the freeway following signs toward Asheville while the moon sat in the middle of the mountains flaunting its full face. The moon and I have our differences but tonight I was thankful for it while it sat there glowing, despite how arrogant it looked. Because no matter the circumstances it has always given me the chance to speak. That’s what we all need most times.

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