Her Presence

a poem by Vikash

Her voice awakens me from my daydream
And I search for her in this crowd,
Praying that she does not see me.
I am gifted with the opportunity to watch her,
Knowing that she is unaware of my presence,
I slowly slide down the seat,
Hoping that she will not see me,
Not today, not now.
Silently, like a guard
I watch her every movement from here,
I have watched her a thousand times before.
And maybe, a thousand times more.

There was a time
When I would have gone to her…
Sometimes we’d talk for hours,
Sometimes I would just listen
And other times I would simply bask in her presence.
Today, I can just observe her, that too from a distance.

Sitting here,
I can almost
Hear her laugh,
Feel her touch,
Smell her perfume.

I watch the breeze run
Through her hair
And I remember the way
It felt on my finger tips.
I watch her sip her coffee
And I wish I were the cup
That is graced with the pattern
Her lips
Leave behind.

As she gets up and leaves
I am filled with relief,
Though I ache to be closer to her,
I don’t want her to see me now.

“My God, It is you
What happened to the hair?”
I look up at her,
Dismayed that my presence was discovered,
I offer her a seat across me.
I can say no more
As the response from her face
Crushes me.
“Not Again!”
She whispers.

For the next hour,
We just sat there
In an isolated ‘togetherness’.
A most sought-after serenity engulfing me,
I welcomed it…
No false hopes,
No unnecessary words,
Just a much need silence.

She was unable to cope up with it then.
Still I survived,
Hoping that she’d be with me
When it was all over.
Now, I have to go through it again,
Knowing that she will not be with me
When it’s all over this time.