Balm

I’m sorry.

Fire extinguisher to flame.

I’m really sorry.

Ointment to wound.

I could’ve done better.

Lifting the lid off a bubbling pot.

I’m so, so very sorry.

Glue to slow-spreading crack in delicate, delicate glass.

* *

I’m sorry too. I want to be better for you.

Gloriously soothing balm for the thorns in our words.

 

Snowfall

Nighttime after snowfalls always has a magical quality to it.

Very, very late at night –when the rest of the world is indoors and tucked in– the activities of the outdoors die down, and a soothing stillness takes its place. The snow reflects the precious scant moonlight, which bathes the world in a purple-orange hue; it’s a scene so peculiar yet so calming.

We stood amidst falling snow and soft howling winds, the football field stretching further in our minds than its 150 yards. We trekked across it, stopping here and there to free-fall into the snow and make us-shaped indentations. It is like the field has pulled a blanket over its head. The field that, in the daytime is the site of loud, brash athletic brutality, has at night become a noiseless expanse of stillness and serenity.

We walked past skinny trees wholly crystallized from frost, and found, in the middle of a clearing, a twin swing set. Why was there a swing set? We didn’t know, but it was perfect for the two of us.

So we swung, and we sang — under our breaths, for upon exploring the frosted trees, we found we had trespassed into someone’s open backyard.

This was wrong, we would say, before launching into another Coldplay song. We discussed the possibilities of a Freddy Kreuger coming out from behind us, and where we could run, and the near impossibility of escaping when our tracks in the snow are clear as day. We pondered the likelihood of finding an axe in the shed. We wondered if anyone would hear us scream.

Then you told me a story of how a man found his long-time pet snake lying next to him on the bed one night, prepping itself to make a meal out of him, and we both shuddered. Enough, enough, we said.

And as the snow fell heavier still, and the wind howled stronger than before, we began to tell stories. Stories about ourselves, about our hopes for tomorrow, in hushed tones that say, I’ll tell you this, but don’t tell anyone else, okay?

Didn’t I say, nighttime snowfalls always have a magical quality to them?

Aceh

Flying off to Bandar Aceh tomorrow.

In a flurry of messages on a Whatsapp group chat, my boss reminded us to pack long-sleeved, loose-fitting tops, long pants or skirts, sleeping bags, headscarves, along with an assortment of other directions, like “no nail polish”.

And buried somewhere in the middle, in a nonchalant, casual-sounding text that you would miss if you weren’t paying attention — “bring insect repellant and be mindful of earthquakes etc”

Be mindful of earthquakes, etc.

My boss is such a hardcore lady.

The four of us will be roughing it out in Aceh, and I’m excited. Adventure time!

Curl

Curling into you.

When the alarm goes off in the morning, and the only sounds I can make are groans of great reluctance to get up, I just want to curl into you.

Because you are warm, and because you are soft.

Because I can scent the you-ness from your shirt, and it is intoxicating.

Because your hand on my back gives me comfort, and your fingers running through my hair make me… make me… make me go like this :3

But mostly just because –and I guess I should tell this to your face– just because you are so, so damn nice to curl into.