I saw him today. As I was walking, I caught a glimpse of the very man I had spent days reading about...coming at me from my right. I looked and then quickly looked away. I couldn't bear to see the hurt in his eyes. As he crossed my path I made sure not to make contact with him. I stood there for a moment in the parking lot...frozen.
a grocery store
he and I
A couple of feet apart
....I watched him slowly walk away and I knew he was crying. I could hear the pangs of his tears smash against the concrete // rolling over small pebbles and making it's way to my shoe- connecting us....trapping us in that moment. I wanted so badly to hug him and to let him know that everything was going to be ok, but I knew that it wouldn't be....
not any time soon, at least. What do you say to a person who has lost someone ? I couldn't find the words or the courage to offer him my condolences. I kept thinking " go over there! It might make him feel better".
Suddenly, I saw myself approach him. My arms wrapped around his torso like a daughter hugging her father before starting the first day of school. Like an embrace held before prom, before graduation, and before going off to college. Before a wedding and after purchasing a home. I felt him remembering how it felt to hold his daughter. I could sense him trying to pick up her scent and to picture her smile and the way she'd call him "daddy". I could see him molding my face into hers and changing my hair ....
...and I backed away. Realizing I hadn't done a thing but watch the distance between us grow, i'm regretting not making good use of the time we spent in the parking lot. We passed as strangers.