"The opposite of love is not hate. It is indifference."
Hunched folded in
Mahogany curtains hung over her face as her head bent into a book.
Her eyes were crystal blue.
If you looked close enough
you could see the S curves and I lines of what she read.
It was fine to stare because she never looked back at you.
The books commanded her full attention
and she was so willing to give it all to them.
Her hands built a barrier,
a fort of books
between her and you and the rest of the world.
She was enraptured, wrapped safely in the printed word.
She was a ghost of the halls and passed unnoticed.
Unnoticed by all but me. Her pale complexion wasn't ghostly enough to be transparent. Her skin reflected white light in my direction.
I saw her every day.
Observed the way she didn't.
She commonly bumped into people and walked into opening doors. Undisturbed, continued down the page where she had left off.
Sometimes...I wished she would bump into me so I could hold her there. Kiss the bruise forming on her forehead and those paper-thin lips.
Once, those eyes drifted from the page-to me. They weren't vacant, they were...hungry. Do I have writing on my face?
No— those eyes couldn't be looking at me. I turned around and there stood a great wall of books mocking me. She moved right through me, eyes trained on the paperbacks that lined the shelves. She was seeing books behind my back and ran to them lovingly. I was struck like the match I wanted to use to burn the novel in her hands, if only to make her look at me, for just a second.
Her eyes, though bright, were blinded so she couldn't see the hunger in my eyes—hazel, bet she didn't know that unless she read it somewhere. I wanted her to see me, run to me.
My only hope is, when this poem is stapled to the bulletin board outside of English class, she'll turn away from her book long enough to read it and know every word is about her. Maybe I can move her with my written words but until then, I will bump into people and walk into opening doors as I watch her figure across the hall, face buried in a novel.