Soccer

A creative writing piece.

You were famous for how you played on the field. Everyone knew you were going places with your skill. Sometimes I thought you must have retractable limbs because of the impossibilities you made possible in the game.

I was famous because after every game, I was the girl you went to in the stands, put your arm around, and brought down to join you.

You were famous because you brought thunder and fire onto the field, as if lightning struck multiple times within the same game, the energy flowing through you to produce every movement.

I was famous because you ignored all the other girls calling out your name. Ignored them for me. I was sure there were legions of them out to kill me because of that alone.

But that wasn’t why I was there every game.

I was there because I wanted to see you smiling and doing what you love.

I was there for those precious few moments after the game when everyone was gone and we were sitting in your car, and I could lean over and give you a kiss.

I was there to feel your heartbeat, reassuring me you were alive and healthy, because I knew the next day would bring us a whirlwind of things to do, and we wouldn’t know when we’d have enough time to spend with each other again.

I remember when I used to laugh at the faces you made, and how I’d try to copy you when you rolled your eyes but could never do it.

I remember how you would pretend you didn’t see me when I did something stupid, but I’d see you smiling at the floor, and know you did.

I remember loving your smile, and the way you always looked away at the beginning of each one.

I remember placing my hand on your cheek whenever you smiled at me so I could feel it.

I remember what it feels like to kiss you while we were laughing.

And then I remember the end of us. You got busy with the game and I got busy with my career. The day we realized we saw strangers when we looked at each other. Now I see you on TV, and look away.

Now you’re just another name on the list I tell new friends when we swap stories.

“You dated a soccer player?” They ask. It’s all they hear, and even though that’s nothing close to all you were, I smile and nod. I wish that was all you were to me.

“I used to.”

I remember how you always smelled like grass.

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