“Housewarming” (or, the Inevitability of Boy Talk)

The windows are open in June. Why wouldn’t they be? They shouldn’t be actually, not now as the fog seeps in from the black bay and in between the rusted jewels that are nestled on the Oakland Hills.

But two friends sit outside on red patio chairs among the low breeze and stillness of a soft, warm afternoon. Come the evening, it’ll be a sight to see as two skylines from the views of this balcony erupt in lights over those steel monsters along the harbor.

I hope he knows we’re just friends.

OaklandHills

Finding myself alone with new faces– new guys in my life– turn me into a nervous creature. Even with just friendly faces, it’s all a weird affair. For awhile I only had one face that concerned me– and it’s not here anymore.

In the absence of boys I’ve rediscovered girls and their comforting, flighty ideas to graciously waste away in this new town. And yet boys come back. They’ll corner you– they’re curious about that one chick who seems to converse with and tease them so naturally like she’s the one who’s got all her shit figured out. They haven’t figured out how terrible I really am at the business. Perhaps it’s all a game to me because I poke and smirk at their wonder in a sense that beneath one of their facades I’ll rediscover His face again. But we’re beyond that. I move on, but I struggle. I move forward with each passing bar and awkward impressions I must make talking with coworkers about love and exes at 2 in the mornings, forgotten intimate words with strangers in your bed that happen to take the same bus route as you most days– until I get here. Here is a moment I try to guard myself in all the reservation but proper enthusiasm for the topic of conversation. We’re talking poetry: he says it is a work ordained by structure– I ardently feel it is in fact the language of chaos.

Here we are in celebration of a mutual friend’s emancipation to the furthermost reaches of the East Bay slopes. It’s not my party but in this idyllic space I’m sure feeling connected, the life of it. Passionate, and warm, like a summer afternoon should be.

And I hope he knows we’re only friends.

 

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