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Tumbling down the stairs with her tumbler of hot tea. A burst of humiliation and laughter. That commenced it. His warm chest. A wish of good life and a goodbye. I look at him for days. Him- his cigarette between his fingers. I could never put into words why there is so much beauty in a man smoking from afar. Quietly, he smokes, quietly he thinks of maybe, Indonesia. Sometimes, he smokes while he checks his phone. He smiles and she melts. Maybe, he reads a message from a woman (who has a vintage bag and has clear pronunciation) he met last night or a photo of balut vendor in a sikad. I look at him for weeks. Sometimes, I caught him staring and we would look at each other. We would never smile. One time, I caught him looking at the photos I took. He also strummed a little in my mini-ukulele. He looked into my eyes for a couple of seconds and bowed. A signal of a hi or an im-sorry-i-was-here-when-you-were-not-and-im-embarassed-now.
I look at him for days. Him- his cigarette between his fingers. I could never put into words why there is so much beauty in a man smoking from afar. Quietly, he smokes.
“So, you will go there… There are beautiful paddies, volcanoes and cheekbones.”
“Yes. For my job. I am excited”
He looks at me for days. I like the color of his skin, it reminds me of the farmers in the village where I grew up. I like the scar near his upper lip- I have been thinking of it as something he got from a bike accident or a High School fisticuff or an explosive kiss. He looks at me for days. And in one night, we told each other “I love you. Not from afar. This close.” He looked at me in my leather corset. And I kissed him like forever.