Cupped Hands

We sat still and looked.

Again, a thrill passed through my body.

In our eyes, our spirits danced.

The day grew long, and bright.

Later, we locked up the apartment and went down onto the street in our jeans and T-shirts.

Sailor stood there, blinking in the sun.

I held my half-full coffee cup in two hands and looked at her.  She’d pulled up her hair, and I could see the back of her neck, and the thin chain she’d put on, just showing above the soft, well-laundered edge of her T-shirt.  She stood with her hands in her pockets, with her shoulders up ever so slightly.  The air was cool, and yet she seemed to enjoy it, the sunlight, and the feeling of the breeze against her skin. I realized I was staring at her body. I wanted to touch, but didn’t.

It was mid-morning, and the life of the city was full, and busy.  A car alarm blurted and then ended abruptly, followed by the rumble of passing truck.   Exhaust, and engine sound, and sunlight filled the street.  From somewhere came a pair of voices, perhaps children talking in an upper-storey apartment.  A man dressed in a jacket and tie jogged from the stoop to a car parked nearby.  I looked to the end of the block.  People emerged from the train station.  Men standing near an open truck watched a stack of boxes go below the street on a freight elevator.  A jogger with earbuds and new sneakers bounced past, led by a shaggy retriever.

“I think you were talking about a kind of loneliness,” she said.

We walked to the park nearby, where you can look out over the Hudson River.  It was sunny, but there was a slight breeze, and my ears got cold.

“Going all the way is not an errand,” she said, “It is a dance.”

“And I’m a dancer,” I said, “Dancing is my life…”

“You won’t be satisfied until you feel your story has been told.”

I cupped my hands over my ears for a moment.  It was getting cold.

“Listen,” she said.

I uncovered my ears.

In the distance, somewhere far away in the park, I heard singing.


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