Warm

Someone once asked me what it felt like and all I could say was ‘warm’.

 

I’m not good at describing things. When I was four, I held a piglet at a farm and when my family asked me what it felt like all I said was ‘firm’.

 

But that is what it feels like: warm.

 

Warm like the glow of light through the door of number 17 that promises me you are there.

Warm like the steam off the big bowl of pasta we share, the lunchtime tomato soup, the bedtime cup of tea.

It’s warm like the chest I fall asleep on and the forehead you press close to mine and the arm up the back of my sweater, the hand on my knee under the table.

 

And sometimes it’s too warm. God, it’s so warm, it’s suffocating and you’re too close and it’s burning and stifling and you need to get out of here before I boil over and you can’t do anything right and you don’t think these things through and why aren’t you more open and fucking hell why haven’t you taken out the recycling yet?

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But soon enough it cools down again, it always does. The fan starts working, it’s just warm again- you’re so kind, this is great, you’re my best friend, I just want to do your laundry and laugh with you. It’s warm. Sweet, cosy, comfy warmth.

 

But we have to be careful it doesn’t get chilly, that the thermostat gets turned down without us noticing because we’re busy and tired and distant and don’t have time or energy to keep the heat on. I wrap myself up away from you in a coat made of friends and hobbies and other plans because the warmth that came from you seems so far away it’s like it never was.

 

But it was. And it is. We just wait a while for the seasons to change and we both make the effort to stoke the fire and pull our socks up and it’s warm again.

 

Warm like the face I can spot in any crowd. Warm like the wave you’ve given me on a hundred different platforms on a thousand different days as my train pulls in.

 

Warm like you.

Warm like us.

Hot

And

Cold

And

Warm.