Friday, May 29, 2009

Rachel meets Mia

It was a mutual kindness, at first,
an exchanged smile on a New York
street corner, encompassed by a current
of bodies and smoggy sunlight and taxis.
Mia recognized the face from a
magazine picture, a small 1x1 with
a caption next to an article. She had saved
it and pegged it to her cubicle wall.
Someone had observed it and asked why.
Mia liked her writing style.

And here was the life of that image, almost smirking,
almost pensive, almost friendly. And Mia
took her opportunity. She boldly introduced
herself, held out her hand, offered to carry
some of the tower of parcels, and
Rachel accepted, flattered by the kindness
of a stranger, flattered by the compliment, engaged
by her eyes and her determination.

They were fast friends with much in common--
writing, theater, the use of language. Mia had
found a mentor, an audience with a shrewd eye,
kind and patient with a firm sense of self. Time
became a frustration because it shortchanged them.
Sleep became an obstacle. Tomorrow always
brought butterflies in the breeze.

The world is familiar with that first flush of
emotion at meeting someone spectacular,
when songs take on new meanings, the air
feels different, clothes are worn not to attract
but to flatter, and suddenly scent becomes an issue.
The sight of her sent Mia into an uninhibited
smile, into fumbling and stammering and
unbelievable physical chaos. And Rachel
received this with hesitation, knowing what
was likely happening and slowly letting it grow
upon her like a climbing vine. It could not be ignored.

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