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     “First Kiss”
 
Her cherry flavored
lips
tried to make
themselves
as accessible
as possible
tilting her head
to the left
as she watched
the movie
giving him the
option
for a quick
kiss
without him
even having to
touch her body
to do so
not that she
was opposed
to a little
soft contact,
her friend had
said
“Nobody likes to
kiss,
dry lips”
so tonight
she went heavy
on the cherry
lip gloss
she had neglected
to ask her
friend
what flavor boys
liked
her friend
having kissed
three of them
so far
this earned her
the label of
expert
in their circle
of friends,
they were well
into the movie
and sitting pretty
close together
in the car
but she was
starting to think
it wasn’t going
to happen
for her
tonight
when she noticed
that he took
the drink
he was holding
in his right
hand
and transferred it
to his left
hand
clearing the space
between them
of any possible
obstructions
so he could
lean in
for a kiss,
that’s when she
felt
it only fair
to do her part
and give him
a clear approach
which was the
whole reason for
the head tilt
to the left
now she is just
waiting for him
to take it,
she couldn’t explain
why she felt
this first kiss
was so important
to her
she had debated
that very question
with herself
this past week
did she want
to be kissed
by this boy
because she thought
he was cute
which he was
or did she
just want to be
kissed
and see if
her whole world
would change
just like her
friend
said it would
she never did
come to an
absolute conclusion
deciding it was
just a little
bit of both,
he leans down
and reties his
shoes
which struck her
as some what
of an odd thing
to do
during a movie
but when he
rose back up
and arched his
back
in what he was
hoping
looked like a
natural stretch
she was ready
for him
leaning forward
just a little
so she could
help him with
this maneuver
so that when
his arm came
down
it could easily
rest around her
shoulders,
but he misjudged
the length of
his reach
his right arm
not able to
rise up enough
to clear her
head
as it swung
back
hitting her in
the face instead
with the back
of his hand,
not wanting to
take off his
jacket
before the movie
started
his reach was
quite limited
an un-talked about 
disadvantage
to wearing a
Letterman’s jacket
on a date
they can be
some what stiff
without very much
give,
he probably would
have made it
if he had
unbuttoned his
jacket
all the way
down
but he thought
that made it
look sloppy
besides
the big bold
R
on the front
of the jacket
tended to droop
when not buttoned
up
and he was
quite proud
of that letter
being the only
Sophomore
on the Varsity
basketball team
so the jacket
stayed on
and the buttons
snapped tight,
she would have
been able to
fend off his
unplanned attack
of his hand
to her face
had she kept
her eyes open
but she had
closed them
when she leaned
forward
thinking when she
leaned back against
his arm
and opened them
again
she would be
looking into the
deep blue
of his eyes
as he was
making his approach
for the kiss,
instead
she gets a
pinky
to the eye
not just once
but twice
when he makes
another
quick attempt
right after the
first
this time she
keeps her eyes
shut
as she pushes
her chin
into her chest
trying to give
him
an extra inch
of clearance
her forehead
catching the
brunt
of the blow
from the back
of his hand
in his failed
second attempt,
she tried her
best
to play off
that little melee
as if it didn’t
happen
drawing his
attention
to the big
screen
so he wouldn’t
notice
her left eye
starting to tear
up
as it refocuses
on the giant
images in
Technicolor,
she can see
he’s embarrassed
so she asks
him
a couple of
questions
about the movie
to try and
help him move
past this
she makes a
mental note
to ask her
friends
if they had
to work this
hard
just to get
a kiss
she wonders if
things would have
gone smoother
if he had just
challenged her
to a game of
one on one
in basketball
at least then
she would be
face to face
with him
and would have
got a couple
of free throws
for the hands
to the face
fouls
and she looks
pretty Damn
cute
in shorts
a fact she
wants duly
noted
in the record,
she gives him
a glance
having given up
on the head
tilt
to the left
he had gotten
quiet
paying more attention
to the movie
than to her
that edgy
nervousness
he had earlier
when he was
getting ready to
give her a
kiss
was gone
has he given
up
on the night’s
quest
well she hasn’t,
she gives him
a minute
pretends to be
lost in the
dialogue
between the soon
to be dead
girl
and her friends
in this very
predictable
slasher movie
then she gives
her body
a little shake
with a barely
audible 
“burr”
he looks over
with concern
“are you cold,
I could start
the engine
and turn on
the heater”
he says
“no,
you don’t need
to start the
car
maybe I could
just borrow
your jacket
till this chill
passes”
she says
as she gives
her body
one more little
shake,
without saying a
word
he swings open
his door
and jumps out
running his hand
down the front
of his jacket
unsnapping every
button
in one swift
fluid motion,
she smiles
as she watches
him
in action
his profile
lit up
from the back
light
of the movie
screen
as he slides
his jacket
off his frame
then leaning in
to the car
he carefully
drapes it over
the front of
her
lightly tucking
it in around
her shoulders
her fingers
emerge
from under the
jacket
on top of
his
helping to pull
it up
to her chin,
and it was
in this brief
moment
as he watched
the colors
reflected from the
movie screen
move across her
face
hiding her eyes
from his
time has no
presence here
as he looks
down a pond
her face
lost in its
perfect symmetry,
till the scene
on the screen
changes
casting a bright
swath of color
across her eyes
lighting up
their innocence
his mind void
of any thought
looking out from
inside of his
own dream
as his left
hand
slides from under
her fingers
to the car
seat above her
shoulder
supporting all
his weight
the two fingers
of his right
hand
find her ear
then lightly trace
a path along
her jaw line
stopping under her
chin
and with the
slightest degree
of pressure
possible
raises up her
mouth
to meet his
a sequence of
unplanned events
that just happened,
she was only
trying to get
him
out of his
jacket
never imagining
she would be
undressing him
to increase her
odds
of getting that
kiss,
she was touched
by his sweetness
not just handing
her
his jacket
but delicately
placing it over
her
no longer now
thinking about
that kiss
as she looks
up at him
as he leans
over her
his face in
a shadow
the bright lights
from the movie
blazing all around
him
then the movement
on the screen
causes her to
look past him
the serial killer
chasing a well
built coed
through a dark
forest
instinctively
her fingers poke
out
from under the
jacket
to help pull
it up to her
chin
finding them
on top of
his
a different kind
of chill
rushes through
her body
causing a little
shake
this one
wasn’t under her
control,
she felt helpless
as if the night
had cast a
spell on her
when she felt
him
pulling his fingers
away
from underneath
hers
she wanted to
stop him
and keep them
pressed tightly
against her
but she couldn’t
move
or speak
like she was
watching this moment
play out on
flim
unable to change
the outcome
his unexpected
soft touch
to her ear
slowed everything
down
the frames of
her life
silently
clicking by
only one
at a time
snapshots
of the night
she’s living in,
when his fingers
drifted along her
face
they left behind
a heat signature
an almost visible
trail
from her ear
to her chin
and when his
fingers stopped
her head began
to tilt upwards
his face now
illuminated
a foot away
from hers
as the lights
of a passing
car   
bring it into
sharp focus
for her
and though he
never paused
as he began
leaning down
to her
she looked into
his eyes
for what felt
like forever
her lips
slightly parting
on their own
as they met
his,
a thousand
little things
flooded
into her mind
during this
time
looking for answers
from her
then rushing back
out
leaving only a
couple of
recognizable
questions behind
before the next
wave of questions
came crashing in
an ever changing
tidal pool
of thoughts
drenching her mind
as his lips
slowly pulled away
from hers,
his face then
disappearing
into the on
coming
bright lights
of the movie
her eyes still
pointed forward
as he climbs
back into his
seat
he also turns
most of his
attention
to the action
on the big
screen
except for the
bit
that was directed
to his right
hand
that was stealthily
inching it’s way
towards her left
hand
which jumps
from her side
and tackles his
hand
at the shriek
of another
very beautiful
but quite slow
coed
getting caught
by the killer,
they both watched
her desperate
struggle
their fingers
intertwined
as they talked
to each other
without words
letting the slight
tugs and pressures
of their fingers
say what they
both were feeling
till the storyline
of the movie
took them to
a young couple
kissing
for the very
first time
and as if on
cue
they both turned
from the screen
leaned in and
kissed the other
then resumed their
pursuit
of following
the killer
who was sneaking
up
on his prey,
till the first
words
after the first
kiss
were finally spoken
in the car
“you taste like
cherries”
he said
“do you like
cherries?”
she said
“more than I
ever knew”
he replied
as he squeezed
her hand
just a little
tighter
causing her to
give him a
smile,
the kind of
smile
he could feel
in the dark…
 
     Tom Allen…11-03-2018…