As Full As Friendship # He posts a photo of a hedge warbler, which means you’re late. He sends another of his beer. You can almost hear his laugh. You rush as if he were your lover. You know he’ll smile when he sees you. # You slip into the garden. He’s lost weight since last year. You should tell him. You almost do. He hugs you too hard. He doesn’t need to be perfect. You’re done with perfect. # You talk nonsense. His full lips open and close. He gets up to buy drinks. You almost reach for your phone. You remember when you left the party early and he walked you home. He held back your hair as you were vodka sick. You’d almost forgotten. # He comes back with prawn cocktail crisps. You hate prawn cocktail. You tell him and he laughs. That’s weird he says. You’re thirty this year: he’s known you for fifteen. The sun comes out on memory and you talk and drink. You try a crisp. Things change. # You almost stumble getting your round. You catch yourself. You’re a little drunk so you lean on his shoulder. You need another five hours like this. You almost tell him but don’t. He says he wants to take a trip; he almost says ‘with you.’ # It’s time to go. You want to kiss him. You press your lips to his forehead too hard, afraid to breathe. I wish we lived nearer you say finally. Yes, he almost shouts. # The house is dark. The moon is big and round but half-hidden, unsure. You take a photo; almost send it. The screen on your phone lights up; he’s beaten you to it. It’s almost full. Your foolish heart.
Beeper Peddle is a writer and healer living on the East Coast. She lives with her partner and their beloved soul puppy. Beeper writes about sorrows, lies, and deep loves. When you read her work, you will dip down into her heart and end up in all manner of body parts. Should you find yourself reflected in these words, it is merely coincidence; however, it does not surprise her you share the same heart. Find her at bethpeddle.com and @beeperpeddle on Twitter and Instagram
Julia Ruth Smith is a mother, teacher and writer. She lives by the sea in the South of Italy. Her work is published or upcoming in Reflex, Full House Lit, Flash Frog and the NFFD anthology. You can find her on Twitter @JuliaRuthSmith1 or at the beach. She/her. She still believes in love.