I love being horribly straightforward. I love sending reckless text messages (because how reckless can a form of digitized communication be?) and telling people I love them and telling people they are absolutely magical humans and I cannot believe they really exist. I love saying, “Kiss me harder,” and “You’re a good person,” and, “You brighten my day.” I live my life as straight-forward as possible.
Because one day, I might get hit by a bus.
Maybe it’s weird. Maybe it’s scary. Maybe it seems downright impossible to just be—to just let people know you want them, need them, feel like, in this very moment, you will die if you do not see them, hold them, touch them in some way whether its your feet on their thighs on the couch or your tongue in their mouth or your heart in their hands.
But there is nothing more beautiful than being desperate.
And there is nothing more risky than pretending not to care.
We are young and we are human and we are beautiful and we are not as in control as we think we are. We never know who needs us back. We never know the magic that can arise between ourselves and other humans.
We never know when the bus is coming.
After a morning of riding through whimsical snow flurries up and down Pine Street on my bike, after stopping at a thrift shop in the basement of St. Anthony’s Church and an uppity antique store that smelled like my grandmother and a junk shop filled with trinkets and treasures, after enjoying the smell of Switchback’s spent grain all the way down Flynn Avenue, after checking out Blue Bandana to see their chocolate making set-up and watching the granite wheels of the melanger churn the cacao beans while I warmed up by the cafe’s fireplace, after cozying up at Four Corners of the Earth Deli with a Jamaican Avocado sandwich and hot coffee and my sketch book and enjoying the owner’s smooth Danish accent as he listed the ingredients in his Cuban pork sandwich to the construction worker on his lunch break, I must declare: I love you, Burlington. I am in love with your nondescript warehouses filled with yoga studios and bagel shops and artist studios, your brightly painted quirky cafes and quirkier shop owners with endearingly ugly dogs and love for bizarre art. I am in love with your smells and colors and the way that views of the lake and Adirondacks peep out between openings in the trees. I love the bundled up families that play ice hokey together on the city-maintained rink and sled together and give me a friendly wave when I ride by. I love you, Burlington. I feel like I’ve known you my whole life and yet you reveal new parts of yourself to me almost everyday. You’re at once familiar and comfortable and fresh and exciting. I don’t know if I’ll be here forever but I’m here now and I just want to drink you up because you give me butterflies sometimes and I can’t get enough of you.