U2 – Lemon

She wore yellow
a long flowing hippie skirt
and one of those tight angora sweaters,
the kind
that just compels you to reach out
and pet it.
The sweater was striking
and so was she
and while we’d spoken a few times
passing on campus
I didn’t believe I was in any position
to offer a complement
on her most excellent attire.
We just didn’t have that sort of relationship.

I wrote a story
about a girl who wore yellow
and changed the world around her with her beauty
and I pulled it
off my dot matrix printer
and I walked the stairs to her dorm room and
with her door closed
I tacked it to her wall
and left it for all to see.

I don’t think there were any clues
as to who wrote the page-long ode
so she could assume
it was the handsomest boy at school
who had been watching her from afar,
some secret admirer who might sweep her away
from all of this higher education rigamarole,
or some creepy kid
on the first floor of the hall she lived on.
She knew, though,
that some secret admirer
was watching her,
from a distance, studying,
He knew where she lived
and could reach out
at any minute
with or without
her permission.

I never addressed the letter.
I tried once
to engage her on a bus,
neither of us wearing anything notable,
but she broke eye contact
and wouldn’t talk to me.
We just didn’t have
that sort of relationship.

About Jonathan Berger

I used to write quite a bit more.
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