Win a Kindle Fire HDX, Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash ($229 value)This is a joint AUTHOR & BLOGGER GIVEAWAY EVENT!
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All New Kindle Fire HDX 7" Giveaway
The winner will have the option of receiving a 7" Kindle Fire HDX (US Only - $229 Value)
There is a certain timeless cool about the series. I streamed the pilot... first season, first episode, the other night. I was blown away by the beauty and energy of the show. The two hour long pilot zooms full throttle as it introduces us to two super hunks.
memory-photo flashes before me of the first time I saw you. You were a seventeen-
year-old guy with Clark Kent glasses; your warm smile sent snuggly things
dancing in my body. From the moment you touched my hand we were locked in delicious,
unforgettable, shout-it-from-the-rooftops first love. With complete faith that
our future would be spent together, we held our passion in check until the time
we would marry.
Not a day passed when you didn’t tell me how proud you were
of me. You even adored the things I abhorred about myself. My skinny stick-like
legs with knees that looked at each other were beautiful. The space in my front teeth was adorable. You made me feel loved for the first and only time in my
life. Catholic-me loved Jewish-you. Naively happy, I failed to understand our
Do you remember our Sundays spent in long drives in your
Mercury convertible? You were so proud of that big old car. We traveled 9W
along the Hudson River till we had memorized every bend in the road. We watched
summer turn to autumn; it moved so quickly as if an artist had splattered reds
and golds in a wild creative frenzy.
One time you found a
pheasant feather and tickled my nose with it. I grabbed it and slipped it into
the pocket of my car coat. Once at home I pressed it between the pages of my beloved
copy of A Certain Smile where it
remains. It’s been thirty-plus years and I can still conjure the scent of your Canoe aftershave as we laughed and
kissed in the November rain.
Snow came just after Thanksgiving. We carried a picnic lunch
of turkey sandwiches and hiked the woods following the prints of little animals.
We were two innocent teens in a winter fairyland. Do I linger too often on
these memories? I think not. If there is a time when you are showered in
unconditional love, when your soul dances in the clouds, then you keep that
time in a small corner of your heart for the lean, mean days that will surely come.
Spring arrived dragging Easter with it. Your laughter wilted.
It was a drizzly Sunday when you came to me wearing your moss green sweater but
without your smile. Do you remember your words? I’ll never forget them.
I can’t see you anymore.
I’m breaking my mother’s heart… because you’re not Jewish.
Confused by rejection I didn’t see coming, I sobbed. I’ll convert. I’ll be the best Jewish wife
and mother. How complicated could it be? I buried my tears in your chest.
I can’t do this to my mother.
I can still feel your cold chapped lips on mine. I knew then
it was our last kiss.
I’ll never forget you. Your words were
meant to ease my pain.
Now I pick on the memory-scab and it bleeds. Why didn’t you fight
The world went on… oblivious to my broken heart. For me the wrong
people slipped in and out of my life like cats through a picket fence.
Cheaters, they took pieces of my trust with them. But I clung to the belief
that you would never have deceived me. You might not have fought for me, but
you would have always been truthful.
After my second divorce, my second betrayal, I saw a counselor.
I asked why I gave my love to men who cheated, and why my shattered soul would
seek out the memory of you after each painful encounter.
The counselor explained the natural order of things. First
experiences are seared into our psyches with a vividness that doesn’t fade like
other memories. We are a blank canvas at that point in our lives. We may not
remember our third kiss or the kiss we received on our fortieth birthday, but
we most certainly remember our first kiss. That clarity of memory is called the
primacy effect. You were stamped in
my heart as my gold standard, forever.
At times when the
lights were low I would see you. Just before I dozed or as I perched on the edge
of waking in the morning you were there… but not. I could stand it no longer. I
hired a private investigator to find you. My instructions to Sam were simple. He
was to find you. If you were married, he was not to make contact with you. I
did not want to complicate your life or hurt anyone.
Weeks later, I was in a business meeting when the call came. Cupping
the phone to muffle the background noise I listened to Sam’s excited voice. “I
found him! He lives very near you. Let me know what happens. Oh by the way, he is married.”
A punch in the stomach would have
worked as well and hurt less. I heard a voice say, I can’t do this, and realized it was mine.
“Call him,” Sam said. “It’s
really important to him. When I told him I was working for you, he almost came
through the phone lines.”
My heart did handstands while my body shook. “I need time to
think. I have to fix my makeup.”
“Makeup?” Sam sounded
bewildered. “It’s only a phone call. He asked for you to please call him right
now. Here’s his number.”
The phone slipped slowly from my hand like something held in
a dream. If I followed through, I was about to hear your voice from the far side
of a quarter of a century. I was the same, but what about you? Once I dialed,
I’d have all the answers. My fingers slipped on the keypad. It rang once.
And then your voice, alien and yet familiar: I can’t believe it’s you. I’ve spent my
whole life looking for you.
I was frozen with crystals
of emotion. All the things I had waited years to tell you fell from my mind
like dead butterflies.
You whispered: I’m
amazed. You did something I’d dreamed of doing so many times but lacked the
courage. I’ve never stopped loving you. I loved you from the first minute I
laid eyes on you. You’re my soul mate.
Could it be this easy? Why were you sharing so much so soon? I
panicked but responded in kind: No matter
what was happening in my life, you were there in my heart. I’ve always loved
you. Every city I traveled I would crack open the phone book and search for
your name hoping to find you.
You sighed: I looked for your face in every crowd,
wherever I was. I’d think I saw you and then be wrong. I’ve only had two loves
in my life, you and my wife.
The words, my wife,
are painful to hear, and so I stepped over them as my world spun under me. Were
we coming together? Or was this a dream?
I let you steer the course as we poured facts, dates, and
times into each other as if a portal had opened and a stopwatch was clicking
off our last minutes on earth. I felt myself come unbound as the ropes that
held me together for over two decades fell away. I imagined I felt your tender,
sympathetic touch on my face as I told you of the life I led since our last
Your voice turned sad: For
seven years I made countless trips to your parents’ home begging to know where
you were. Your mother would slam the door in my face.
I wiped a tear as I
whispered in the phone: She never told me
you were looking for me.
There was a long
silence before you spoke again: I finally
gave up. I met Amy, fell in love and we married. She’s Jewish.
At that moment I had a terrible urge to run back to my jaded
world. It hurt to know that Amy was able to give you what I couldn’t. But I was
being selfish. I knew she must love you dearly. It would be impossible not to. My
senses began to warm. I remembered the comfort of your wooly sweater and your big
strong arms. I remembered your laugh. It was a great laugh.
I’m so glad we did this:
I sensed our phone time was ending.
Your voice carried a smile: You did this.
Why were you so hard to find? I asked.
You laughed: I was right here.
We’d grown up in the
same northern city. Separately, we had traveled the world only to settle a few
miles apart in Florida. Serendipity?
Again you whispered: A couple of years ago I made one of those stupid blunders men do. My
wife and I were talking with friends about first loves. I said I had never
gotten over you. That was a mistake, and it upset my wife a lot.
I melted into the receiver: I’ve lived my life so that there were no what if’s except for you. You’re
the one thing left undone in my otherwise full life. I tested the waters. I can’t wait to see you again. I was
thinking of coffee at Starbucks. Daylight. Open. Honest. No sneaking, just two
old friends who held each other’s hearts.
Your sigh carried a stinging finality: I couldn’t hurt my mother, and now I can’t hurt Amy. You were my first
love but you can’t be my last. As much as I want to see you, I can’t.
That was when I guessed your urgency for my call was
generated by Amy’s absence. She might be shopping or having her nails done
while I was soul-mating with her husband. My heart shattered like crystal on
concrete. I listened to you breathe as I longed for more words. I couldn’t let
Your goodbye was heavy with regret. You hung up and my world
Again, I was on the outside
looking in. I couldn’t sleep that night. I felt body parts I never knew existed.
Everything ached. I needed to touch your face just one more time and then I’d
go in peace.
The first pinkish
rays of sunlight worked their way into my room as I finally dozed. In my dream,
a faceless Amy came to me. She wore a headscarf and a hospital gown. She placed
her hand on my arm and asked me to take care of you. She was terminal. I felt her
pain and reached to comfort her. She spoke in the wordless way of dream
visitors. “Take good care of Mark,” she said. “He always loved you. I’ve sensed
your presence in our marriage.” Still dreaming, I wiped a tear that trickled
down my cheek.
“But who gets to
keep him in heaven?” I asked.
Amy gave me a
puzzled look as she started to fade. I began to wake.
“Wait!” I said. “You
or me? Who gets him forever after?”
I stared out the
window at the full glory of morning and wondered if my dream meant anything. My
pillow was wet with tears. A dozen questions flickered like candles in a draft.
How is love valued in heaven? Is it by the length of time or the strength of
love? What about soul mates?
There is that moment of
truth wherein you choose action or inaction and that choice tells you who you
really are. I didn’t like me as I left a cheerful message for you on your
office voice mail. I trumped up a story about having to be in your city next
week on business. Although my intentions were innocent, it was wrong to call
and I immediately regretted it. I just wanted to see your smile… one more time.
Another night and sleep would not come. I heard my heart beating
in the darkness. Please don’t call back.
You have no idea how much this means. Don’t call. I needed you to be the decent
man I fell in love with. If you were a man of honor you wouldn’t return my call.
But what if you did? Then who would you be? More importantly, who would I be?
upon a time in the very beginning there was a guy with a smile that could light
up my world.
You never called.
Years have gone by since
those scant few phone words. I open my eyes to the dawn and know something is
very wrong on this earth. By evening I still can’t shake the terrible chill. I
type your name in the search engine on my computer and then hesitantly type the
You died early this morning.
one would have known to tell me. There is no one with whom I can share my
sorrow. Lines from Byron’s poem “When We Two Parted” haunt me.
When we two parted
To sever for
they cheek and cold,
They now not
I knew thee,
thee too well:
shall I rue thee,
I will walk to the beach clutching this letter and my treasured feather from a
long-dead pheasant. This paper and the feather will catch the breeze and dance
over the darkened sea. I know this letter will reach you because first loves
never leave your heart even if they never share your life.
Win a Kindle Fire HDX, Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash ($229 value)
This is a joint AUTHOR & BLOGGER GIVEAWAY EVENT!
Bloggers & Authors have joined together and each chipped in a little money towards a Kindle Fire HDX 7".
Sign up to sponsor the next Kindle Fire Giveaway:
1 winner will receive their choice of an all new Kindle Fire 7" HDX (US Only - $229 value), $229 Amazon Gift Card or $229 in Paypal Cash (International).
There is a second separate giveaway for bloggers who post this giveaway on their blog. See details in the rafflecopter on how to enter to win the 2nd Kindle Fire HDX 7".
Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader, Not A Writer and sponsored by the participating authors & bloggers. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.
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