by Keila Martinez

first occurrence: eight of dad’s fingers turned towards the lines that presumably determine one’s fate. his two thumbs pointed parallel to the ribbons of blue that unravelled between beams of light. not caused by the sun, but a warmth glowed within. accomplishment.

second occurrence: said amongst many other words of affirmation and praise, high fives and tens were passed around. the grins contagious as the family created within the season will reside within hearts for a lifetime. friendship.

third occurrence: followed by a ‘to meet you’ and a firm yet friendly handshake. although used to fill with talks about the weather, curiosity and interest led to countless coffee cups shared as blue skies turned to lemons and oranges. one of many rendezvous. date.

fourth occurrence: the harsh winter reflected the darkness. ground up feelings, coffee now only available as bitter and cold. their attempt at being polite, unnecessary as it was accompanied with contradiction. “you’re nice, but…” but you left before anymore cushioned lies spewed from him. rejection.

fifth occurrence: years later, you’ll find your head rested against their chest, steady pulses syncing together. All of the word’s past connotations will warp as one into this very moment. simple, yet impactful. swaying to the non existent notes floating through the room, you whisper, “this is nice.” and all will feel right. happiness.