My hand grips the handle of the front door. I hesitate to open it. The brightness of the sun’s rays greets my face, blinding me from reality. The irritating sound of the blaring taxi’s horn rings in my head. I blink my eyes to focus but the sun reflects off your black leather suitcase. I watch it brush against the khaki brown pants that hide the muscularity of your legs. You are leaving and I refuse to let the sadness overcome me, but the soft hum of the yellow car makes it hard. Just knowing it waits to take you away lets the sadness prevail.

I concentrate on the cracks in the sidewalk and contemplate their purpose and the person who decided their usefulness was an importance. I become deaf to the reality of our departure, instead I imagine the whirling drum of a cement truck drowning out the voices of orange vested men. I see the mouth of a cement layer moving. His words can’t be heard above the cement truck’s desperate need for a tune-up. The repetitive growl of the spinning drum combined with it’s cough, has become a wonted aspect of his life, therefore the words he speaks are unintelligible to me, but can be heard and understood by his co-workers that absorb their significance.

I’m brought back to reality by the touch of your strong hand in mine. It warms my thoughts and erases the dullness of gray cement. Immediately I realize the time for sadness to engulf me has come. Your gentle grip tells me you’re trying to be strong. I look into your eyes hoping compassion shows you I can see your sadness and that I’m trying to be strong for the both of us. But, knowing you don’t want to say goodbye, makes it hard to fight back the tears. Sadness wants to fill my heart. You wipe the tear that has escaped from my eye telling me you will be the strong one and with a squeeze of my hand I know it’s okay to cry. 

My teeth seem whiter against the redness of my lips. I don’t want to stop fighting the sadness, and biting my lip is an attempt to prevent it from entering my thoughts. I don’t want to think of how sad I am because you’re leaving. I want to begin anticipating your return. I want to think about putting away your clothes while I listen to the excitement within the narration of your trip; I want to think about how wonderful it’ll be to hear you say you’re happy to smell the goodness of my cooking after too many nights of eating drive-thru plastic. I want to hear how eager you are to feel the comfortableness of our bed again, because nothing compares to the warmth and firmness of the one we share. I’ll look at you admiring the smoothness of your face and I’ll burn inside feeling the passion within our kiss. Eagerly I’ll comply to its sensuality and make love to you all night. These are the thoughts I want to fill my mind, not the overwhelming sadness I’ll feel when I watch you wave from the taxi’s rolled up window. 

You shift your feet when you drop your suitcase to the ground and thoughts of your return become the realization of your goodbye. I stare at the suitcase struggling to balance itself then you sigh. I ignore the tears that are leaving black streaks down my face and subconsciously encourage the determination of your suitcase. I know I’m only trying to block out the softness I’ll hear in your voice.

Your fingers warm my chin as they slowly direct my face so that my eyes can see your mouth speak the words I am afraid to hear. Through blurry vision I look at your lips, listening for that dreadful word you’re hesitant to say.

“Don’t be sad. I’ll be back before you know it.” Are the words I hear seeping from your parted lips. Then our synchronized vows of I love you are sealed by our kiss. 

Your suitcase now rests on the backseat of the taxi with fatigue. I hear you shut the car door but watching your hand wave makes me happy. I smile knowing that sadness hasn’t won. For those words of you coming back to me reverberate in my mind, drying my tears. And through your strength I clearly see that the sadness I fought so hard from feeling is driving away from me. It’s imprisoned in the word you never said, goodbye.

Let's Stay Connected