Wednesday, July 9, 2008

The Magic of Front Porches

Sitting curled up on the corner of her bed was her favorite way to contemplate. She sat with her back to her window letting its light pour onto her open notebook listening to the combination of the music playing on her cd player and the gentle tapping of the rain.
There was an edge in her feelings today. She couldn’t decipher it completely . It was a combination of the fear of rejection and the hope that this boy was different.
Jamie was everything she’d ever hoped for. His beliefs and morals were stronger than she’d ever seen. She respected him for his kindness, strength, brilliance, and a musical talent that seemed to flow from deep inside his soul. She loved nothing better than sitting with him while he played his guitar.
The night before had been their best yet. He’d come to the house for a cook-out, and late in the evening, as they sat on her porch talking with friends, she’d asked him to tune her guitar. That went better than she ever could have possibly imagined. He’d smiled as he tuned the guitar, but instead of returning it, leaned back into the wall of the porch and started strumming. She relaxed into the chair next to his perch and closed her eyes. There was a magic in the music he created. The casual grace of his beautiful hands finding words he would never speak. It became indescribably beautiful to her.
She would, every few minutes, look up into Jamie’s liquid green eyes while he played. The joy of just being and creating something beautiful was plain on his face. He was lit up from the inside out while he played, more beautiful than the sunrise.
But what she really wondered, as she sat curled on the bed was, did he know? Was the joy she felt in his presence visible to him? They’re friends all knew. Claire felt like her heart was as far out on her sleeve as it could get. She shamelessly plugged his music and ability to everyone she knew because she felt he really didn’t see himself for all the talent he really possessed. What a true thing of beauty, she thought to herself and smiled.
Claire still had no idea if he knew. Even if he did, would he say anything. She thought he would if he cared, but she was more concerned that he’d play the gentleman and pretend he didn’t know. No, no, she berated the thought, he doesn’t know, or he’s too shy to say anything. He’s healing from Her.
She shook her head. How long does it take a heart to heal? His beautiful heart had been broken by a girl Claire never felt really deserved him. She didn’t understand how they had stayed together. Jeanette. She cringed as she thought the name.
Her mind flashed back to the last time she saw them together. Jamie had been holding Jeanette’s hand as he talked to Claire about books he’d been reading. Claire had listened to every word absorbed by how much he wanted to tell her, but eventually she’d noticed the sullen expression on Jeanette’s face. She never felt comfortable with Jeanette. Jeanette, she was sure, could see through her feeble attempt to disguise her feelings, but today, Jeanette didn’t just seem annoyed with her, but with the fact Jamie wanted to speak to her at all.
It was less than 24 hours before Claire had a distraught Jamie calling her. The irony was how upset he seemed to be giving her bad news. She’d melted when he’d apologized and quickly convinced him that he never could or would be a burden to her. That’s what friends were for, to care for each other.
There had rarely been a day since then that they had gone without talking. It had been a month and a half since his heart had been cut open, but he seemed to be healing quickly under her care. She just kept praying it would become so much more.
Claire’s lips parted into a wide grin remembering one of the last things she’d said to him before he left the night before.
“Jamie, why doesn’t this happen every night,” she asked waving at him and the guitar.
His response didn’t come in any words, but instead in the form of the most gorgeous grin she’d ever seen, and it was directed at no one but her. I could make you happy. So very happy. Claire wanted to say so many thing, but her heart stopped for a moment as he kissed her lightly on the cheek as he handed her back her guitar and said good night. As she watched his tail lights disappear, she couldn’t help but wonder what would happen next.
Now, as she sat on her bed, she stared at the blank pages of her journal wishing she had the words to describe the depths of her feelings. Then the phone rang.
It was Jamie.
She took a deep breath, smiled, and opened the phone. She barely had time to say hello before he spoke, “Hey, I was wondering if that front porch would be willing to have me back tonight? I think the audience is my best yet. I could get use to it…”

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