When I Must Wake

A tickle, a nuzzle against my neck. A breath. A sigh. I can't move, but I feel the slow, steady rise and fall of my chest. My eyes stay closed. I'm suspended, hovering, hesitating as each side pulls gently. My arm slips and I feel the smooth, muscled warmth of your thigh as you wrap your legs around me from behind. Familiar. You touch my shoulders and slip your hands under my arms. Trembling, my heart thrums, spilling warmth. Smiling, I nod so slightly I'm not sure you noticed. Your exploring hands answer by reaching between my legs, your mouth answers with teeth on my neck. A moan. Not sure if yours or mine. I long to turn around, to close my eyes enough that I can see you, know you, but my arm is asleep. And I hear the fan. My breathing is fast and shallow. I'm lying on my back. Awake. Alone.

I long to see you, to know you, but my body, my mind can't stay there, in the fugue, the twilight, the in between. Do you miss me when I wake? When I sleep and dream? Do you watch from invisible crevices, hiding in shadows, hoping I will remember how to find you? Do you know my True Name? My purpose? I am incomplete. I feel it every day. Something was lost, is missing. I cannot name it or describe it, but you are part of it. Maybe all of it. You will find me and drag me down to the Deep Waters and we will love for eternity. What is one lifetime to wait? Nothing. If I were ignorant; if I didn't know. But I do know. Each touch, each time, each brief moment together fills me with joy and peace before draining me, cruelly, against my protests. I'm not done here, but I wake up empty just the same. I wake up crying and forsaken. I love again and again. I struggle and learn. I hope for meaning that will never be revealed. I make a good life here. I love, I strive, I share. I am not alone. You can see that. But it's not the same. These feelings pale to The Before and The After. Is it time I'm supposed to appreciate? And it's passage? For us, a moment was forever and the universe a drop of water. For me, here, without you, time is a prison.

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