But We Were Just Friends, Right?

An Ode to My “Lover”

It was the night of January 31st.

There was nothing remarkable about it—

Nothing to serve as a harbinger for what was to come.

In the dimly lit open space crowded with unknown faces

Yours stood out, though I couldn’t tell just why.

Thanks to our mutual who introduced us;

I doubt she knew what she was birthing that day.

Getting your contact felt no different,

For as unique as you seemed, this was just another—

Another number among the many,

Another number my lazy self wouldn’t likely text.

But till tomorrow I know not what came over me,

And why I texted that same night still confounds me.

Perhaps it was the beginning of your influence,

Maybe I should have seen it coming.

The intriguing “weirdness” with which you texted

Was what anchored me to you in those beginning days.

Chatting had never felt so exciting.

You brought a spark to my monotonous life—

A breath of fresh air I never knew I needed.

A few weeks in, we had our first night call,

And that was when things started to get interesting.

Perhaps it was my random, half-minded question

About how true it was that people catch feelings at night

That did more than “flow” a harmless conversation.

Who knew you’d be falling fast?

And who knew I’d be falling last?

Your text gave the much-needed relief after a long, tiring day;

Your company and the cherry-sweetness of your alto voice

Held my heart from slipping into the darkness of a boring life.

It was all lovely, until that our fateful rendezvous—

Who would have thought catching feelings was a bad thing?

When you confessed and suggested a break,

It felt like a death sentence, but worse, without the death.

I’m glad we didn’t follow through with that resolution,

For greater satisfaction lay in the coming days,

As we tried to walk the tightrope between being friends

And catching feelings—who were we kidding?

The late-night meetings where we talked and laughed

And became one with the stars as we gazed in awe.

But who knew that walk down Barth road would be our last?

Two months and a few days after we first met,

The ghosting began.

Perhaps I should have seen it coming.

I should’ve known I was sitting on a time bomb.

I can’t help but think about it,

I know you did it for you—and probably us—

But mostly you, because you weren’t ready.

But how you left without saying a word

Till tomorrow haunts me like my worst nightmare.

And even when we crossed paths,

The coldness I met wrenched my heart like a tourniquet.

I still wish we got to watch that movie

And had that exotic rendezvous at that eatery

And got to witness aesthetic sceneries hand in hand.

But that’s all gone now, and I miss all that we had.

I read our chats and all I see are sublime vestiges

Of a love that once burgeoned in innocence’s light.

It’s May, and I can’t help but think and ask myself—

But we were just friends, right?


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