Leaving perfection

You. You're dressed in blue jeans and a white blouse. Unbuttoned just enough, but not too much. It's warm out, maybe middle of June. The lightning bugs summon us. We leave tire on the road as we speed away in a black convertible, heading for somewhere, I don't know where. A bottle of wine down by the river. The bank lined with weeping willows, gently softening the harsh lines of the rocky shore. You grab my hand, sweaty palms. Moonlight starts to fill the sky as the water runs over tiny pebbles. It sounds like a song we've heard, so we hum along. Ripples in the water. Stars. Crickets. Gentle breeze. Sip of wine. I start to speak, but nothing comes out. You tell me to be quiet. I already am. A cloud briefly covers the light of the moon and I lose you in the shadows. I can no longer see your lips. Where are we, why are we here? The cloud disappears and the outline of your sweet face slowly comes back to my eyes. Something is different. I excuse myself to get a drink in the river. As I do, I look down on the surface. An unfamiliar reflection stares back at me. One I have never seen. One that seems confused, yet knows exactly why this perfect is not right. What makes so much sense just cannot be. As beautiful as it all could become, it will only lead to confusion. I can smell the jasmine in the night air. Darkness in all directions, lost. What way do I go? I start walking. I can see Orion, so I think I am still alive. I can taste the blood on my lips that are dry and cracked. I can taste the salt in the tears rushing down my cheek. I choke on the nectar of honeysuckle. I blink ten times. I wake in a cold sweat. Is this real? What is real? I jump. I hope to land on two feet. It is a long way down.

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