Monday, May 17, 2010

First Love, True Love And The Difference Between

It was one of those summer days where you could close your eyes and feel the West on the tip of your tongue through the tangibility of the dry heat. She was walking through the cornfield, barefoot and in her paisley, cotton dress. With each step, she could feel a new scratch being laid into her smooth, bronzed calves. She smiled to herself, remembering those games they used to play. be a child. Luckily, she had never felt as if her heart had grown older with her. It had fortunately stayed young and innocent, like a breeze through the open window, creating a quiet chaos amongst the sheer summer curtains. Although she could only ever remember walking this particular path alone, she acknowledged the familiar presence trailing behind her. 'Do you know the difference, baby girl?' She turned around and smiled. Of course, she knew the difference. She had come to a crux, where the cornfield met with an inviting field of white flowers. She stepped over the last cornstalk, into the lush field and sat down. Picking up a flower she thought about what he had asked her. She looked at the flower that was twirling in her hand. She couldn't stop smiling. It was simple. If she had never picked the first flower, how would she have ever learned how to take care of the next flower? She would have never known what the flower needed: how much light, how much water, how much space, how gentle of a touch. The first flower is for learning, while the second is for growing. As time slowly ticked by in the heat of the day, she looked down at the flower in her hand. It had already begun withering. He saw her frowning and reached in his back pocket. From his well-worn blue jeans, he pulled out a tiny black book, handing it to her. With the dwindling flower in one hand, she flipped through the book with the other. There was no writing, but almost every page was filled with dried flowers. Beautifully colored, and preserved to perfection. She understood, placing her own white flower in between two new pages. She closed the book and looked up to return it. She smiled. It was just her and the field. She carefully pocketed the book and began looking around the field for another beautiful flower. After hours upon hours of cautiously rifling through each flower in the field, she came upon a single maroon-orange one. She contemplated how she could have ever missed this gorgeous rarity, in a field of white. Falling to her knees [already tattered and dirt-stained], she meticulously singled out the flower that was pulling at her heartstrings. Instead of abruptly picking it from its stem this time, she very cautiously dug out the flower from its lengthy roots. With mud and blades of grass visibly caught underneath each fingernail, she smiled as she held up her flower into the sunlight. 'Run home, baby girl. You know what to do with this one.' She turned around, feeling the wind carry a few stray strands of her auburn hair across her cinnamon-kissed face. Once again, she smiled. She felt an overwhelming sense of thankfulness and sprinted home through the cornfield with her growing flower closely nestled against her chest, while the other was tucked respectfully away in the pocketed book.

First loves are for learning, my dear. True loves are for growing.