Open Window

I would never choose to sleep with the window open. He did so I do, at least for tonight. He thinks that at any moment he could snap out of his slumber and soar out of the window of our seventh floor apartment. It’s silly, really. He’s always dreaming of Bali, or Indonesia or his home on the Caspian Sea. But for now, I am freezing and plan to close it before he awakens. I peep through the covers and can’t believe this is ours. Boxes of his scripts, my lesson plans and endless piles of clothes are strewn across the miniature room, wedged in the middle of Spanish Harlem. His adventurous and charming spirit landed us here, far away from my mother’s idea of a white-picket fence. He needed the city and we needed a two bedroom apartment, just in case, on a very tight budget. The buzzing of voices I don’t understand blend with the leaking water from rusted pipes. The traffic noise never subsides, despite the platitudes of our landlord. But every inch of this is ours, down to the egg smell in the front hallway and temperamental gas stove. It is a blank canvas for coral paint, home-cooked meals and late- night Jimmy Stewart films.The window is open close to our feet, and the idea might be ridiculous, but as I press my body close to his, I feel safe. The warmth of his cadenced breath occasionally singes my skin. In one particularly deep inhale and release, my heart jolts, and I realize that this is the most alive I have ever felt. He murmurs about planes and his old dog, Rascal. I make a mental note to remember to tease him for his dream -dribbles in the morning. He knocks me with his arm as he rolls to the other side. I respond by wrapping my arms around his body. My leg pins his waist to the bed, but he manages to turn back around.“What are you doing, woman?  Can’t you see I am trying to sleep?”

A playful smile speaks more than my words, “Close the window, and then, we’ll make a deal.”

He opens his eyes just a bit, and I am glad to see his honey gaze. We share a smile, a moment that lingers on the frosty air. He then squeezes his eyes closed, pretending not to hear a word I say. Instead, he pulls me closer and his arms wrap around my waist. I press my ear tightly against his worn t-shirt smelling of spices and laundry detergent.  Still shivering, I ball up my fists, dig my chin into his ribs and rub my foot up and down his leg, trying to create some friction. Then, I notice that the smallest flakes of frozen rain are pouring into the window, dancing with the copper curtains.

“Uhhh, I think it might be snowing in here, sir.” I jab him in his stomach

He breathes a sigh of defeat and places his palm on the bed. Slowly, he unfolds his body into an upright position. For a moment he watches the crystals float into the bedroom through blurry eyes still covered with the haze of sleep. After he crosses the room, he catches a flurry in his hand and returns to smear it against my cheek. I gasp and my skin contract, as my body shies away deep into the comforter. He crosses again and presses his strength against the window and it closes shut. He slips under the purple-sheets once more. Almost instantly, I hear his breath rise and fall. Jealously turning and tossing, I simple cannot get comfortable. I rotate from staring at the blotchy ceiling to the back of his pepper hair.

When even the voices on the street are muted, I suddenly swing my toes down on the old wooden floors and sneakily glide to the window.  I place my palms on the glass, and push upward, just slightly. It is better this way. Laughter resounds and makes me jump. He grabs my hand and pulls me to the bed, giving me a kiss on my forehead.

“You’re impossible, do you know that?” He says lovingly.

I send him that a coy smile and breathe in a deep sigh. Finally I am able to dream.

2 thoughts on “Open Window

  1. Pingback: Opening up the heart… « 12stonesofGilgal's Blog

  2. Pingback: Birthday for my boo | 12stonesofGilgal's Blog

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