Grasping at the what ifs

She got obscenely drunk that night

At Madeleine’s 30th party in Islington

At 12:30 AM we finally stumbled into the street

Into the ongoing November drizzle

Intoxicated but triumphant

Young hearts but old souls

The world could have been ours

Except her, she staggered a little too badly

I volunteered to see her home to Wood Green which was sort of on my way

Conveniently so

I’d had a thing for her for three years

But of course she was taken. Married. Beyond.

Husband worked as some high level engineer with oil

Always away

And as it happened she talked about him the whole way home in the taxi

Things seemed to be sliding badly

I was struck with that odd tongueless sensation of having no insights

No words for her other than bland agreement

I walked her up to her door

It was red

In the flash of a moment I wondered about her

It captivated me

What did she do alone at home?

What does she read, watch, eat?

Does this lifestyle make her lonely?

Especially not having to work

“You have kind eyes” she said

The rain persisted

She raised her face for mine

And oh god I kissed her back

This drunk lonely woman who I’d thought about so often

“I must go. Delivered safely,” I quipped

She clumsily fumbled at the door and eventually got in

She closed it without looking back

I turned and walked down the street

In a dreamlike state

What had I done. Why? Kissing a drunk girl for fucks sakes.

And now the worst part

The next time we’d see each other would she even remember

I’ll never know

The rest of my acquaintance with her may be some guessing game

I could see it all so clearly

It’s the things left unsaid that taunt us the most

Leaving us grasping at the what ifs

While the clocks tick and we fry a single egg in the pan as the radio plays

It looked like another two blocks to the high street

The rain persisted

I needed to get out my damn umbrella out

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