Sitting in a coffee shop, I am reading up some news items that might be deemed serious. At a table at the far end, she sits. Her blonde hair tousled with gel. I can smell the spray that holds it. There is a bright light before her eyes as she talks in a language I do not understand. She speaks loud, then laughs, her little girl voice now throaty, and then it drops to a whisper. She is on webcam and I cannot see the monitor but I watch as she winds her fingers into her curls and bends a little to reveal some cleavage.
It is obvious that she is talking to a known person. Maybe a husband, a boyfriend, but most certainly someone with whom she is intimate. There did not appear to be any obvious intimacy. She would not have chosen so public a place and there would be people who’d understand her language. I understood her language, in an unspoken manner – the language of distance, of pain, of pining, of sexual tension. It was evident as she inadvertently pulled out the headset and the male voice could be heard on the speakers; she plugged it in quickly, as though it were a cigarette butt left burning.
She did not say any goodbye. I only heard a sigh as she snapped close the laptop. She wore a skirt with a misaligned hemline and stilettos; her blouse clung to her tiny frame and her hair suddenly seemed too much, too big for her frame, for her face, for her body. It was like a camouflage for her person, since for a long time that is all I saw of her.
She went to the cash counter to pay and the jerkiness of her hand movements as she fidgeted in her purse and insisted that she did not need a bill even as she grabbed it and then ran her fingers through her hair, pulling out the tangles, almost straightening it, those curls now needing to be tamed into relaxation…she might go out for a drink and let the slight headiness weaken her senses or she might retire to her room somewhere and recreate the conversation. I can hear her voice in the breeze as it blows gently and then creeps in between the fronds with a whoosh sound that falls silent as maybe a leaf falls into a whisper.
She’ll find that breeze echoing in her room and envelope her body.