“I’m lonely,” Minna admitted.
“So am I.” He didn’t look at her, but looked away, beyond the trees, down the path to the valley.
“I didn’t like living with the children’s father, but I’m still lonely for a man. Crazy, isn’t it?” Her words were thoughtful, musing. She let her sewing drop to her lap, stilling her hands. Instead of following his gaze, Minna looked the other way, down to the sparkling lake that fed the crops and watered the livestock. They were both quiet for several minutes.
“Do you know what I miss?” Minna’s voice had a dreamy quality to it.
Unnoticed by her, Ben had leaned back into the grass and was watching the clouds and they took on the colors of late afternoon. He turned his face toward her now, seeing that her chin was in her hand, her eyes glazed in her daydream. Startled by how young she looked with wisps of hair escaping her braided coil, he could only stare. In this light, her hair looked like flaming silk of scarlet, gold, even platinum. Her face, normally creased with worry and sorrow, was unlined. The angle of the sun softened her colors and melted them into swirling hues that echoed the sunset. He longed to paint her.
“I miss kissing.” Minna continued, and seemed to be only peripherally aware of Ben’s presence and completely oblivious to his attention. “I miss really, really kissing. I miss those deep, enthusiastic, passionate kisses that only new lovers kiss. I miss touching. I miss the feel of fingertips brushing against my skin. I miss kisses that take my breath away and a light touch that makes me shiver with anticipation. I miss him taking my face in his hands, looking deep into my eyes, tangling his fingers in my hair…” Her voice drifted into silence.
Ben drank in the shading, the shapes, the colors. If he never saw her like this again, if she never opened her soul this way again, he had to remember it. He had to keep this moment in his heart and his mind. He willed her to continue.
“I miss romance,” she said softly. “I miss that feeling of being desired by someone.”
Ben let out a breath, long, steady and low.
“I want passion all the time,” she continued. “I’m greedy for it. What’s so sad is that it only happens at the beginning of a relationship. Every relationship I’ve ever seen gets to the point where the passion fades, and there’s nothing there but habit, complacent routine.”
Belying his assumption that she didn’t remember he was there, she suddenly turned to him. “I want the kind of passion that happens when he comes home and I’m standing at the stove, and he comes up behind me, gently moves my hair aside and kisses me on the neck. I want to lean back against him and close my eyes and savor the feeling of being loved and wanted.”
Her breath came fast. “I want the passion that happens when I touch his shoulder as I walk past, and he reaches for me and pulls me into his lap. I want the kind of passion that happens when he says he’s going for a shower and he pulls me in with him, then we bathe each other slowly and carefully, with serious attention to every inch of skin. I want the kind of passion that happens when he wakes me in the night just because he wants to touch me, and wants me to touch him.”
Ben’s eyes widened. His lips parted.
“I want passion that stays,” Minna said fiercely. “I want passion that is just as physical as it is emotional. I want to desire, and I want to be desired. I want to feel my skin become electric under his touch, to yield to his touch, to open my heart and my soul and my body to him, to give him every drop of what I have to give. I want to trace the outline of his body and feel it respond to me. I want to watch him sleep next to me. I want to wake up because he is watching me sleep. I want to be in his heart, and I want to give him mine. I want to drink his essence and know that he drinks mine, too. I want to be his passion, and I want him to be mine.”
No comments yet.