by H. J. Hampson
I see Suzanne Arnold’s face every time I close my eyes. There she is with her dazzling, sunshine smile, tattooed on the insides of my eye lids. These days - at least - it is not every time I blink, which is how it used to be. It’s curious she’s smiling, really; but, I suspect she is not smiling at me. It’s a replica of a photograph, so of course she’s really smiling at whoever is - or was - beyond the camera lens. Kevin, no doubt. Pathetic, wet, Kevin. He doesn’t deserve her eternal smile.
Her hair is so dark and thick and I long to touch it, smell it. Does it smell of molasses, I wonder? I’d like to think it does. Or caramel, or autumn? She looks like an autumn kind of girl with her hair and her chestnut eyes that could warm you with a glance on a fresh October day. Sometimes when I dream about her, I wake up imagining she’ll be there next to me. Don’t I sometimes feel her soft breath on my neck just before the fragile dreams disintegrate in the stale air of the morning?
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