Pleasant Tense

Her eyes are closed. Tightly, in anticipation.

But nothing is there.

Her breathing has ceased. Stalled, in apprehension.

But no one is there.

She lifts her hands. Up. Forward. Against the tentative tug of gravity.




Often times, her palms meet air. Often times, nothing is there.

Nothing is there.

She destroys one inch.

Palms do not push, just meet.


Pressing against a solid barrier. Familiar. Cool and warm in different places.

She is literate in this landscape.

His lungs push back, as if sighing.

You've found me.

Her wrists bend with the gentle force.

His breath tickles her furrowed brow. She does not count on her legs to hold her weight aloft - she ceased doing such ages ago.

Damn the knees. Damn the ankles. Damn everything and nothing.


Without looking, she knows. She knows what he is about to do.

Arms take her to the home she never really had. A home for just one person, from just one person. And where they are taking her, she already is.

Always has been.

Though she never knew it.

Eyelids, still tight ebony. She sees darkness and nothing and the stars behind him. A fleeting streak of indigo. A swift splash of the milky way.

Her eyes do not open. She does not need to see.

The feel of him is quite enough.

Always has been.

She has always known this...

When she could not see, he was still there.

He is here now.

Oh, God. He is here.

With one sigh, she submits herself. Slips into a starlit sanctuary.

He breaks her fall.

There is no pain. No harm. No terror.

The world knows these things, but she doesn't. Not anymore. Not here.

He takes her as she is.

Nothing and no one is pretending.

He saw her as she was.

And he takes her as she is.

She needs only to beg him with all her being to hold her closer, tighter. And he does.

Without words, without looks, without encouragement of any kind.

One moment begins in July and ends in January.

As he holds her.