We Need to Talk ... NOW
By: J.T. Evergreen
The poetry in writing is the illusion it creates.
(© 2018 by the author)

The author retains all rights. No reproductions are allowed without the author's consent. Comments are appreciated at...


“What are you doing?” I felt him lean up against me. I turned around and looked up into his face.

“I think I’m in love with you.”

“Nonsense. You’re just grateful.” I moved away.

“That’s a hell of a thing to say.”

“But it’s true … isn’t it?” I picked up the poker and poked at the still burning embers in the fireplace.

“No, it’s not.”

“You don’t know anything about me.”

“I know enough.”

“Well, good for you.” I lit a cigarette and sat down in an overstuffed armchair.

“Why are you so cynical?”

“Obviously, you don’t know enough about me. And what makes you think I’m interested in you … that way?”

“That way? After sleeping with you for the last six months … I kind of thought you might…”

“One night stands … nothing more.”

“That’s a lot of one-night stands.”

“I like sex, and I must admit … you’re pretty good at it.”

He laughed. “Well, thank you for throwing a few crumbs at your trick.”

“I’m not trying to be cruel … just honest.”

“I don’t believe you.”

“Why not?” I sat up and flicked my cigarette into the fireplace.

“Those long conversations after we made love.”

“They were just conversations … small talk.”

“No, they were not. I think you’re afraid.”

“Of what?”

“Of being loved.”

“That’s crazy.”

“No, it’s not. I think you do care about me.”

“I like you. You’re a nice person.”

“Nice enough to marry?”

“I don’t want to hear stuff like that. You’re spoiling everything.”

“You didn’t answer my question.”

“You’re confusing the issue. I think you should leave.”

“Ah … this is my apartment. Where would you like me to go … your apartment?”

“Oh, God.” I got up. “I have to leave.”

“Are we still friends?”

“I don’t know … I suppose so.” I gathered my belongings, left his apartment, and stopped on the stairway.

He opened his front door, “Forget something?”

I shook my head and sat down on the hallway stairs.

He walked over and sat next to me.”

“I’m afraid.” I put my head in my hands.

“Of me?”

“No, of course, not.”

“Then what?”

“I don’t know.”

“Yes, you do. I believe commitment is the word you’re looking for.”

“I was wrong about you.”

“In what way?”

“You know more about me than I imagined.”

“You know, making a commitment doesn't mean it’s carved in stone.”

“Well, it should.”

“I’m surprised to hear you say that.”

“Commitment is a long-term ... commitment.”

“No, it’s not. Commitment shows intent. Things change, people change. But intent provides a foundation to build on. How does that sound?”

“Less frightening, I suppose. I never thought of it that way.”

“Why don’t we go back inside? Old Mrs. Clausing probably has her ear pressed up against her front door. We don’t want to keep her up. You can make coffee. You do a better job of it than I do.”

“I do?”

“Yes, you do. Come on.”

I got up. “Okay.”

We walked back into his apartment.

As he closed the door, “Goodnight, Mrs. Clausing.”



Posted: 01/05/18