To the Birthday Girl

“Hello, friend.” She says, and suddenly her soul reaches into mine, gropes around for the naked mole rat of insecurity, snatches it with swift tenderness, bathes it, dabs it with cologne, and wraps it in a fur coat before returning it.

This is a customary greeting, and yet I can’t recover from it any quicker now than from the first time I met her. So I look into her eyes, like those of a vintage Italian Barbie, only infinitely more beautiful and friendly. They’re always mid-wink – perhaps her eyelids are trying to shield me from the blinding light within. (Isn’t that an inedible sentiment.) Or maybe she just smiles a lot.

“Everyone was hoping you’d get here soon,” she says, squeezing my arm like she’s taking my blood pressure. We’re in front of her friends, many of whom I wouldn’t like if she didn’t like them. She is transfixed by them, as though they are beautiful phenomena. I find myself appreciating people through her. I turn to ask her a question but she is gone. I look around the room. There she is. By the front door, introducing herself to someone. They’re lucky, I think. We all are.

5 thoughts on “To the Birthday Girl

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