I sat on your porch one Thursday afternoon with my legs crossed, hair braided and nose kissed with freckles. My stomach whirled with butterflies. You came outside with one of those smirks, as if the world were at tip of your fingers and you had everything to smile about. And in that moment, we did. Our hands found each other, fingers intertwining as we walked to the ice cream stand across town. I told you to guess my favourite flavour. You stuck your tongue out to the side and furrowed your eyebrows together in a way that made me melt. “Cookie dough,” the words slipped from your lips. I nodded and giggled like one of those girls in the movies that falls in love too hard and too fast. Because that’s what I’d become. And when evening came and my fingertips froze, you kissed them with your cherry lips. You traced hearts on my arms with your index finger, the same finger you used to point up at the stars. “They shine for you,” you said.
Two years later, I stood on your porch with greasy hair and pale skin, fingernails bitten down to the bone. I held a box full of old t-shirts and records that once seemed to mean so much. I waited for you to come down with mine and, as we traded, our hands brushed against each other but the spark was gone, just like the one that would flicker through your eyes at the mere sight of me. Vanished. You asked me what I’d been up to in the same voice you used to tell me you loved me. “Remembering,” I said. And with that, I turned around and walked away to never see you again. And the stars continued to burn bright and I cried myself to sleep because they weren’t shining for me, but for the next hopeless romantic. The girl who falls in love too hard and too fast and will not be strong enough to pick up the shattered pieces of herself when she realises that that very same love that used to move mountains, fades just like anything else.