Prose

The cashmere sweater

It was pouring outside and she was sitting in a cafe, alone. Her yellow cashmere sweater was still wet, matching her mood. She photographed people outside, running to hide from the rain, frowned and angry. No one at that moment saw her spontaneous smile that followed their nervous steps. At least she thought so. She drank cinnamon apple tea while her cigarette was burning, forgotten in the ashtray. The window of her favorite coffee shop has never looked more magical. There was an old song on the radio that brought back some old memories of days when she was a kid and played with the leaves in the park behind the house for hours. That smile, again, perfectly matched with the color of the rain, nostalgic and temporary, yet lasting and sympathetically sad. Her long hair bothered her, no way to calm it down, being wild and untamed as she was. Shades of autumn and melancholy reflected inside her glass eyes. What a sigh. She stared at the boy across the street for a long time, trying to catch raindrops in his little hands. Then the girl with the red scarf waiting for something or someone caught her attention. It was a reminder of the morning when her dog disappeared, and she was waiting for him at the same place she first found him. Tying her hair in a tail, she lit another cigarette and quickly ran over her purse, looking for something. A book. A thin, black cover, with an unfamiliar title. She pulled out her pen and began to write. The diary, maybe? She mysteriously wandered into pages and pages of the unknown. She was constantly scrambling, writing, tearing up a couple of pages, tossing it under the table and putting down her pen. Suddenly, she fixed her glassful gaze in one place. Thoughtful and beautiful, serious and concerned, she closed her eyes and turned her head to the painting on the wall. She looked at that same painting a couple of times. There was nothing in the picture, but a barely visible silhouette of women’s hands reaching for something in the dark. She smiled, remembering her first fear of love and how she walked safely into what terrified her. The light entered through the window and at that moment she turned to it as if she knew that the contour of her face would be perfectly reflected in the mirror in front. Those facial features showed the features of her restless spirit, her fearless attitude, and unexplainable inner beauty. She let go of her long hair and ran her fingers through it, moving it to the other side. It didn’t take long when she tied it in a tail, again. Irresistible. Then, she lifted her pen from the floor, thinking for a second that she didn’t even notice when it fell. She continued to write. Intellectual and endlessly beautiful, mysterious and seemingly calm. There was a raging sea inside her, but she didn’t know how to swim. The waves that drowned her coincided with her thoughts. She lifted her head gracefully as if she had pulled herself out of that vicious water. Her inner struggle was so complicated. She fought with dignity, it was evident in every movement of her body, in the mimicry of her face, on her lips that she bites from time to time. A perfect metaphor for the pain she’s trying to overcome. No one knew about the pain her soul was carrying. It looked like made of stone, and yet, so gentle, with silk-colored skin and some scar beneath. She thought no one could notice that. She lit the third cigarette and ordered another cinnamon apple tea and decided not to write anymore, enough writing for today. And the rain stopped long ago, lack of inspiration. She loved that cashmere sweater, it belonged to someone from her past. Mother, maybe. She decided to leave, realizing that she has been there for hours. She took an olive coat, the largest scarf ever, and came out, the mixed scent of vanilla and cigarettes left behind her. And on the table an empty mug and notebook with a black cover, thin and slightly wrinkled. It’s been a couple of years from that day. Autumn is just getting started. We sit at the same table, and I tell her the story of a girl I loved in her body, with a soul seen with mine. We laugh at my clumsy bike ride as I rushed to give her back the notebook of stories of unhappy love and cruelty of endings. Now, she writes about our beginning, wearing her favorite yellow sweater. I made her drink hot chocolate instead of tea. We talk about love. She takes pictures of people, and I take pictures of her.

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