Letter to the passser-by

You caught me looking. I can imagine your reaction. Dirty old man! I will not undress for your gaze. Your sneer left a barb in me. It smarts; yet is not a wound. More like a bruise on the world.

I did not see an object, nor play a scene in my head. Instead, I watched the lovely progress of graceful form. The body in its glorious prime. Mane of lustre. Shoulders back. The motion of hips. For a few seconds I breathed it in, like recollection, until the passing present strangled the brief beauty of your approach.

You will not believe me. This I accept. I am as little known to you as you to me. I apologise for the invasion of stranger’s eyes. I only meant to adore you quietly, for the length of a sigh, then let you go as breath.

For there is a hunger more elemental than thrill or conquest. Even deeper than validation. Tidal, visceral, blind to all but itself. We learn to paper over it. Then it tears the film of our structured denial. With the sway of a walk. Nape of a neck.  

This is what I saw when I saw you. Something greater than either of us. The ancient and modern ebb and flow of coming and going. Thank you for reminding me. I shall look upon you no more.

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