450 Words – 3 Minutes
Dirty blonde hair, tossed into a messy pony tail. Pinstriped dress pants and a light pink blouse. Fashionable dark shoes propped slightly in the heel. Each garment well sculpted to her slender frame. She slouches opposite the weight of an oversized, yet fashionable, leather bag pulling down her shoulder. Her bronze skin radiates feminine infliction. I am now infected.
She is far away, standing on the opposite end of our shared platform. There are people between us awaiting the train. Most faces default to blank stares of indifferent presentation, their owners uncaring if they’re seen. She is no different. She has not felt my eyes on her and seems unreceptive to sensing my stare. I stay where I am and abuse the privilege. I know I am only digging deeper wounds the longer I linger, but I cannot pull away. I am consumed.
Her eyes point forward from her and seem to connect with nothing in particular. I wonder where her thoughts travel. My testosterone filter embellishes into the romantic. I know this, but indulge regardless. I imagine she is contemplating something once ordinary now forever made profound by her perspective. But, I know this is foolish. She is likely stuck on the trivial; errands to run, dinner to prepare. But it does not matter. She is beautiful, so even the most mundane ideas I now grant undue beauty.
Their poison is most potent in these moments. Unaware of any attention, not trying to impress or dissuade. I wish they knew this. I wish they did not waste such intense effort into synthetic expression and disposition.
As more people fill the platform, I feel my muscles tense in reflex. I dread that one of them will greet her. I dread she will become giddy and greet a female friend. I dread that she will suddenly smile and embrace a male companion.
My brief opportunity is closing fast. A more full, dense crowd has now formed. When it disperses, she will be gone. Once a lone object, she is now hidden amongst a swelling irritant. I maneuver with subtle discretion to find a path of least obstructed view. I only catch flashes of her now. The shine sparking off of her hair, the tan of her exposed arms, the pink curve of her breast pressed firm into her blouse.
A loud screech echoes as the train pulls in. It’s doors open. People move forward and board the train. In the commotion, I lose all sight of her. It has gone as I knew it would.
I do not board, I have endured enough. The doors close and the train leaves. People walk past as they leave the platform and my view clears. I look to confirm what I already knew. She is gone, but I am still here. I will tend to my wounds, now. I will be ready for the next.