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Balloons

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This poem is deticated to Stephanie Nicole, because her unique art inspires me.

 Balloons

This is not a love story. This is not an allegory about me. This is not a love song telling a sob-story about the way the world should be. This is not a love story. This is not a tale of epic romance. I can’t stress that enough. I’ve had enough serendipitous chance and all that mushy stuff. This is not a love story. This is just a story about love. Free from fine and frill.

Once upon a lonely time, there was a lovely little boy who loved a little girl.

He saw her right before summer. It was the first day of the last week, before the end school. She was soaking in the sun, and lay, sun dress on and a warm towel under her, reading by a pool. He was then, like all boys, little more than a fool. He just stood there, mouth open, chest bare, with wet hair, staring at her lying there, like he didn’t have a clue.

What does one do? I have often wondered. When you’re under that spell, you don’t even feel like you. You’re just taken in, mesmerized. And the little boy was too. He couldn’t take his eyes off of her, or fight the urge to feel. It was an overwhelming, desire to touch her, to see if she was really real. For him, she was like art. Perfect art. Her diamond eyes, flushed cheeks, soft golden hair, all of her…Art. I get that. I once knew a little girl who could melt my heart with just her smile.

And all at once, the little boy was struck with a need to know that little girl, a need to talk to her, a need to hold her. He couldn’t resist it. But doubt persisted. What would a little girl like her want with a boy like him? He was nothing special. He was nothing fine. But the urge for her insisted. He couldn’t just let her go. The simple fact that he existed was all she had to know. And so, brain aching, pulse racing, he did the first thing that came to his mind. He blew up a little blue balloon and tied it to a rhyme.

Blue is for the sky above,

the biggest thing I know

To compare it to my simple love

is foolishness, and so…

Blue will be for the time I’ll spend

just knowing that your real

and wishing I had a friend like you

to teach me how to feel.

Then the boy pushed that little blue balloon across the pool toward the girl, a smile on his face wider and more radiant than any I have ever seen. And with that beam, he turned and ran. He was too scared to look back. He couldn’t stand the fact that she never would, never could be interested in a boy like him and would forget him just like that. But the little boy wouldn’t forget, couldn’t forget her. And every time after that, when he saw that she was down, he left her a little balloon and rhyme to wipe away her frown.

Blue was for the sky above.

White was for the snow.

Red was for a heart of love

That brings a Yellow glow.

Green was for the simplest thing,

a life of growth and change.

With Violet like a flower in spring,

her beauty without age.

They were all of them, like pages from his heart. Each simple rhyme a piece of him, as if he had torn himself apart and handed her his hope. And even though each note hit its mark and every balloon would warm the little girls heart, he was much to shy to ever allow himself be apart of her happiness. Try as he might, he could never sum up the courage to encourage her face to face. Instead, he would turn away, smiling that simple, soulful grin. Praying that somewhere inside of her, she too was part of him.

As the days turned into weeks and the months turned into years, I watched him hold her little heart through happiness and tears. Through every emotion and explosion of thought that she had, the little boy was always right there waiting for a chance to make her glad.

Soon enough, after enough time had past, the little boy began to turn into a man. And as he matured and learned the way the world works, he began to wonder if perhaps his love was all part of some greater plan. He began to wonder if he had a shot with the beautiful girl after all. I mean, after all, why not? Sure, he still wasn’t some playboy, or boy genius, but he loved the little girl with all of his heart. That is one of the few things in life I’ve ever know for sure. That honest little boy loved his little girl. He loved her for real, more than anything else on earth. He loved her with a love so pure that it defied every lie I’ve ever let myself believe about life and self-worth.

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