the good in goodbye would have to be her scent on his sweater, particularly on his shoulders and across his chest. talking of chests–their last hug is different from the rest. it is a little longer than their friendship permits-more than it has permitted before. it is as though there is a transfer of energy, of intention, of something… like listening to a song you have listened to umpteenth times and hearing a vague cymbal shake that you didn’t hear before.
“i will be there at 0545 hours”
– aaah! are you for real?-
“have i ever disappointed?”
as he lets go, tears begin to well up in his eyes. he walks over to his ride and hears a small, sad, lonely, needing, missing voice:
he looks back and says the same with a smoothness of snow landing on the mountain on his throat. riding out of the premises he thinks about the last two months. they have only known each other for that long. yet, their connection is like tree roots centuries deep. it is rare, especially for him. he fails to understand how they instantaneously became friends.
as he drives away John Legend’s bridge over troubled waters begins to play in his mind. he sings along,mentally. he’s going to miss her, he thinks. he’s going to miss particular moments that the mind chooses to make unforgetable like the smell of nature in her car. he thinks about the 6 hour road trip they took, along with their friends, to the house. there, the stars shine brighter, each animal’s onomatopoeia is distinct, the wind blows smoother and the air smells cleaner and feels as light as a tickle from a feather.
in muse, he recalls the evening games, the food, the music and the intoxicating mood of it all.
he returns to earth, to the drive but only to turn his head to catch her scent on the shoulders of the sweater he’s wearing. her scent lingers as if continuing something, something beyond friendship, something beyond goodbye, something beyond… he knows memory is linked to scent. so her scent brings memories of her never ending shopping sprees for, particularly, sweets. he wonders if that’s what makes her so sweet. how corny, he thinks with a smile on his face.
she is leaving now. for two years to be exact. he’s familiar with origami- this has to be it. these folds formed by curiosity, by longing, by anticipation of the future are shaping him in ways he hadn’t imagined before, into what he has never imagined before. they do say pain, even if imagined before, will not come as exact as when it was imagined or anticipated. anyway, he wants to see her next year for her graduation but wonders if it is going to be possible. it would really make her happy. or maybe it will make him happy to smell that familiar odor, to have her fold into his arms in that all too familiar hug that births a series of unending somethings, to end the longing of a year or two of impatiently waiting, to taste, yet again, the sweet good in goodbye.
edited by wame gwafila