Dear That Girl in My Early Irish Literature Class,

 

            When you first walked into class the other day with your shiny knee-high boots and your snug V-neck sweater and your black jeans so tight I don't know how you squeezed into them, I was stricken.  I stared at you the entire class.  I don't think you noticed.  I noticed you, though.  I noticed how your hair was perfectly styled and you had on just the right amount of makeup.  While all the other girls showed up to class in sweatpants and Uggs, you were dressed like you were going dancing right after class.  I dreamt that you and I would lock eyes after class and you would take me dancing with you.  It would be our first date.  I noticed that you didn't smile.  Not once. While everyone else was laughing at the professor's jokes and stories, you just sat there.  Your lips didn't even quiver.  I knew because I was staring at you.  I want to make you smile.

            I looked you up on our class roster when I got back to my room.  Your name is Rebecca, but I've started calling you "mi flor del desierto."  It means "my flower of the desert" in Spanish. It's a metaphor.  Our class is a barren desert and you are the beautiful lonely flower who thrives – somehow.  I chose it because I'm pretty sure you're Mexican.  You could be Persian but I can't really tell the difference. Also I don't know any Persian.

            I saw you in the dining hall yesterday. You looked just as pretty as ever. I followed you home – I hope you don't mind.  I waited around the corner for you to go into your room and then I smelled your doorknob. It smelled like cantaloupe.  That watermelon you found outside your room this morning was from me.  I couldn't find any cantaloupe.  Sorry. I hope you liked the bow though.

            Last night after I dropped off the watermelon, I sat on a bench outside your window and pretended to watch you sleep.  I couldn't actually see you since you live on the fifth floor, but it was nice to pretend.  I decided, out there under the moon, that I love you.  I guess that's why I'm writing you this letter. 

Today I'm going to sit next to you in class and give you this. I'll wait until you finish reading, and then I'll reach out for your hand.  You'll take it, and we'll lock eyes for the first time.  Then you'll smile…at last.

 

I love you, mi flor del desierto.

 

 PK