'Flick' by Carol Leggatt
You were my first heart pounding, bring a blush to the cheek crush. The cutest and the coolest boy in school. Back then we walked with our feet an inch off the ground but you flew higher than anyone. Chocolate brown eyes that somehow seemed to see possibilities far beyond our gaze, a smile that embraced the world though no doubt everyone was as secretly certain as I was that it was aimed just at them. In those carefree days you wore life more lightly than anyone. Remember that trick? A casual flick of gum, hand to mouth. You never missed perhaps because you never cared if you did or not.
Play became work. We spun away from each other and years turned to decades. But that picture of you remained in my mind, unchanging, comforting. Then today there you were, unexpectedly, prosaically glimpsed on the street, returned from wherever those endless possibilities had taken you.
And I saw that life and time had laid its marks on you. Lines around eyes that had lost that limitless gaze. A furrowed brow replacing that smile. Your feet firmly on the ground. A mirror shockingly reflecting the years that had passed. And I wanted to hand you a stick of gum and beg you to show me you could still pull off that careless trick.