I want to see your eyes

I want to see your eyes

For TJ

The room was empty.  It was a large blank space and so white that it was hard to tell where the corners were.  But there were corners, just as the room was square.

There were two chairs with their backs against each other.  One was an old rocking chair that smelled of wildflowers.  The other chair was a taller wooden stool that smelled of fresh oak trees.

On the rocking chair was a girl in a blue dress with a white apron.  She sat straight with her spine resting against the back of the old chair.  She rocked back and forth slowly.  On the tall wooden stool was a boy wearing a cotton coat with a hood over his head.  His legs were bent, and his feet rested heavily on a wooden bar that stretched across the legs of the chair about a foot above the ground.  His back was rolled over and his face rested heavily in his open hands.  The girl hummed softly.  The boy stayed sitting bent over in his hands.  The girl recited a poem slowly to herself, unaware there was a boy sitting just behind her—out of her line of vision.

“I laid flat.

Like a mat.

He dusted me off.

Like a bat.

Pat. Pat. Pat.

The dust flew off.

And that was that.

Oh no it wasn’t.

Then he wiped his feet,

On the mat that he had beat.

I was dirty.

He was clean.”

The boy lifted his face from his hands.  The poem was strange, but his mouth opened all the same.
“You’re not dirty.” He said. 
“Not anymore.” She replied. “Kicked that man right out the door!”
“Do you always speak in rhyme?”
“All the time!”

He put his face back into his hands and assumed his position of despair.  After thinking twice about it, he spoke again.
“I wiped my shoes on a mat once. I got it dirty too.”
“Shame on you,” she replied.

He rolled his eyes.  She was crazy.  Neither of them had turned far enough to, or even cared to, look at each other.

“But the poem is nice,” he mumbled through his hands.
“What?” she said.  
He stopped.  Did she not rhyme that time?  He lifted his face and removed his hands from his chin.  “I liked your poem. It was nice.  Sad. But nice.”
“Oh. Thanks.”
“You’re welcome.”
“What are you doing here?”
“I don’t know.  I don’t know how I got here,” he said.
“Me neither.  I just happened to be in this rocking chair.”
“I don’t remember how I got here.  And I can’t seem to stand up.  Even when I try to get up, I just can’t.  I feel…”
“Me too.  I feel like I can’t stand up either.  So I just keep rocking in this damned chair.”
“…And I’ve just been sitting here with my head in my hands like an idiot…”
“You’re sitting with your head in your hands?”
“Well, yeah.  Can’t you see?”
“No, I can’t.  I can’t seem to turn towards you.  All I see are a bunch of white walls in front of me, but my neck won’t turn.”
"Hey, me too.  I can’t turn.”
“Why do you have your head in your hands?”
“Well, I don’t right now.”
“Why did you?”
“Well, in the mornings I wake up sad.”
“That’s too bad.”
“Because I want to change the past.  Don’t you ever want to?”
“I just want to get out of this damned chair,” she said with a sigh.
“I guess that makes sense.”
“What do you remember doing last?”
“I remember being sad.”
“That’s a sad memory.”
“It is.”
“I remember climbing Mount Everest.”
“No.  I remember sleeping on the floor.”
“That’s rough.”
“Not as rough as being sad.”
“I guess so.”
“Why do you think we are here?” she asked.
“In this room?”
“I guess I mean, why do you think we are both in this room?”
“I don’t know.”
“It makes no sense.” And then after a long minute, she said, “I wish I could see your eyes.”
“You do?”
“What color are they?”
“They are not.”
“They are too.”
“I wish I could see them. I like green.”
“…I wish you could too.”
“Let’s figure out where we are, shall we?” She was embarrassed and changed the subject.  She was glad he could not see her blush.
“Tell me something about this room other than it being white and square.”
“It’s just a room.”
“That doesn’t help.  Try again.  Any detail at all.  Anything helps.  What’s significant about this place, about this white cube of a room?”

The boy sat up straight on his little stool.  He opened his eyes a little wider. “We can’t stand up.”
“That’s good. Keep going.”
"We can’t see each other.”
“Good.  Continue. What else about the room?”
“We’re in it together.”

She smiled.  He couldn’t see her face, but he knew she was smiling.
And she couldn't see his face, but she knew he had green eyes.

Panic Lines

Panic Lines