On an ordinary day…

by Tern Pelser

On a normal day, you would be half-awake.

I’d be on the final phase of that dream I’ve been having for weeks on end.

“It’s not a sign. Don’t over think it”, you’d say, as I’d wake up damp with sweat.

I’d clutch your hand tighter than I’d grip a steering wheel on a stormy day.

I’d lie there, on a normal day, and watch you tilt your head off the bleached pillow slowly. You’d mumble something and turn your face to the cracked wall.

On a normal day, I’d slide from the sheets and slip my feet into the slippers you bought me when I complained about the icy bite our new tiles had.

I would wander to the kitchen and stare out the window right above that sink. My thoughts would shift to how every movie has a sink like this.

You always said I had a fine eye for unnecessary detail.

I’d clutch my coffee cup and wait to hear your slow stride.

Your hair would be a mess and I’d consider the fact that you’d probably be the only art piece I’d ever be able to admire up close.

You’d stand still for a while and your gaze would fall on the tousled knots in my hair.

I could never figure out whether you saw them as poetry or synonymous to a rambled sentence that needed editing.

We’d stand there, you and I. Our eyes would meet just like they did on every single normal day.

The cinnamon specks would be floating around your coffee-coloured eyes and the waves would be crashing in mine.

On a normal day, I’d be out first in fear of being late. You’d be on your third cup of tea.

But this was no normal day, I turned my head to catch my first morning-glimpse of you. I saw a bleached, cracked wall.

The sheets held me tighter than they would on a normal day.

The sun was not slipping through that movie-like window, like it would on a normal day.

I guess you were right; I do have a fine eye for unnecessary detail, but the fact that I would never admire art in my kitchen again or look into cinnamon-specked, coffee eyes made the waves in mine restless.

I was late that day.