I remember that we were walking, but not if we were touching.
You were close to me and that is what counted most.
It was a late spring blue night; warm and the sun must have just set. The light was pale and blue and there seemed to be shadows that danced and widened, non frightening and like a blanket that muffled down sound and time. It must have been a wedding or another gathering; not really important because I can’t recall who it was we were seeing, nor where exactly we were. Just that little walk is still there, deep in the memories of my heart. Brushes my consciousness every now and then, but not so much as it used to.
The black tuxedo you were wearing made you even more handsome and I could still feel your curls gliding between my fingers from that morning; now shimmering dark while we passed by branches starred with fairy lights and bonfires in the distance. Maybe you were talking, maybe I was listening.
Our daughter was bound to my chest, I could feel her tiny body moving with every breath she took. She was wrapped up warmly and I remember just looking at her sleeping face with still slightly puffy eyelids , curled lips and a wee little nose. A fluff of dark hair, already so much like yours, was ever so slightly visible under her blue little baby cap (the one your mum had knitted). She yawned in her sleep, fingers one by one were stretched and I stopped in my track, marveling at her.
You reached down and gently stroke her cheek, kissed her on the top of her head and looked me in the eyes. You were such a proud father! I could see it vibrating in your heart, that love for this tiny little human being.
Gently you took my hand, in this old garden with oaks and ashtrays old enough that it had made them curl up, and you kissed my knuckles. Smiled at me and slowly continued walking, our hand still intertwined.
That night (or was it morning already?) I watched you sleeping. As blunt as this may sound, and as cheesy as it might have been, I just could not help myself. Every second that passed felt important and I just could not sit by and let them pass without notice. I knew that we were changing, that soon a normal life with a kid and busy schedules would let us forget those tiny moments. In-between those gestures and light touches, those moments were words were not necessary, would all be muted under the dust of rushed goodbyes and early school runs. And maybe I feared all this.
I stroke your stubbly cheek as soft as I could, just to make sure I was not dreaming after all: trapped in my own unconsciousness and cruel awakened by an alarm. And yet you woke up. Your eyes searching and unfixed until you saw me.
„Are you alright?“ Your voice was still coarse. Everything sounds muffled at this time of the day, when night and day seem to be seamlessly interchangeable, and words whispered hold truths in themselves to grand and heavy for daylight and sane minds.
I simply nodded; I already felt nostalgic for this. I could fell my heart ache from the future, to be back right there with you.
Your hands carefully draw closer under the blankets until I could feel your heartbeat right next to mine.
No words were necessary. You kissed me on the lips and soon your breath was deep and steady again.
And now my love?
What remains are these memories and I cannot handle them. I try to write them down and make them go away, but that hardly helps.
I miss you and sometimes it hurts so much, that I feel like I am drowning and I do want to drown: all my feeling and memories and oh so painful things that happened, but I don’t want to forget you.
but better if I could.