You can call it love, but that would be a misnomer. You can call it love because that’s what you want to believe it was. You can call it love because it’s better than considering the alternative. You can call it love because it’s easier that way.
It was all too easy to fall in love during a Boston winter. With each evening stretching longer than the last, it was all too easy to dream. You should have known that you were never meant to last past the solstice. You should have known better.
Aha! It had to have been love. (What else would have turned you into such a fool?)
It was all too easy to get caught up in the newness of it all. To trudge into the blizzard with reckless abandon. To stand alone in a snow-covered street and squint up at the night sky as the flakes keep falling down, down, down.
Of course it had to have been love. (What else would have kept you so warm in the biting cold?)
But in the winter, Boston becomes a fickle master. Come morning, his words catch in the wind and whip you across the face. The white sea is reduced to icy patches and gray slush. Silent night fades to frosty day.
You heard Boston winters were brutal. You should have known better.
Maybe you should have learned to love in the fall, the season of flux. In the fall, you could feel your colors changing, skin painted with those red and vibrant hues – almost as though you were growing into yourself. Boston was kinder to you then. After all, nothing grows during the stagnancy of winter.
Even so, you want to go back to that moment in time when everything was still. When you were convinced that you could climb all the way to the mountain’s peak and stay there, alone with the city, while the mortals slept seamlessly below. You want to remember those moments. The satisfying crunch of fresh snow beneath your feet. The way snowflakes would gather in your eyelashes. They sparkle like diamonds in the moonlight.
It had to have been love. (What else would have you spouting such sickly sweet clichés?)
But these moments, fleeting and dreamlike as they were, you can never get them back. You were playing a game all along, only you forgot to keep score. You should have known the snow would melt and the river would thaw. You should have known that in the dead of winter, Boston would never play fair.
And it is so unfair. That you are left fazed and frostbitten, while the city treats you with little more than stony indifference. That the city always gets the last word, only to remind you of your tiny, passive existence. That you have allowed him to taint you with his bitterness. Those treasured moments, all part of some massive ploy.
At least now, you know better. You know that it is not enough to fall in love with the moments, because they will only end up melting in your hands.
As the days grow longer, you realize that you always knew how the story would end. Already, you can sense a new chapter beginning. You can see it in the space between each passing snowfall. You can feel it in the silence between each gust of wind.
Time chugs on, slowly, relentlessly. You can hear it, and it sounds of spring.