Friday, January 28, 2011

Ode to Pauline

By now, it has become somewhat like a routine. I would walk back to Kamia after my Geography class, and about the same time I get out of AS, a maroon Ford Ranger would be parking in front of Bio.

By now, it has become somewhat like a routine. I would continue walking back to my dorm while Max steps out of the Ranger. A girl, who I suppose would be Bea, would soon follow; Max would have his hand on her shoulder as they walk towards the building that I just got out of.

By now, it has become somewhat like a routine. Max would see me and I would see him, and for a moment we would look somewhere else - him at Bea and I at my watch - and pretend that we didn’t see each other. It’s not until we’re just a few steps in front of each other that we would actually acknowledge one other.

By now, it has become somewhat like a routine. “Hey,” Max would say. “Hi, Max.” I would reply. Sometimes we’d wave at each other, other times a nod would suffice. I told you, I was never really against Max. I even told you once that he was nice, remember? And I swear, that has nothing to do with the fact that he is Solis’ fraternity brother.

By now, it has become somewhat like a routine. I would immediately look away again, and Max would draw Bea closer. I never talk to Bea. I never even look at Bea. Sometimes I wonder if she asks Max who I am afterwards, and sometimes I wonder what Max says.

By now, it has become somewhat like a routine. I’d think of you as I draw closer to my dorm. Sometimes I fish my phone out of my pocket and send you a message, but I never tell you about Max or Bea – edit – Max and Bea – because it doesn’t feel right. I’d think about how you might be doing now, back in Davao. I think about what might happen when you come back next semester and it’s your turn to see Max and Bea.

By now, it has become somewhat like a routine. I’d reach my room, put my bag on the table and plop on the bed. I would tell myself to stop thinking about you and Max and Bea. I mean, in all fairness to you, it’s not my problem that you fell for that guy and you fell for him a bit too hard. In all fairness to Max, he’s still nice to me despite the fact that the only reason why we know each other is because you used to be together – wait, you were never together because he didn’t want a commitment, right, so let’s change that to because he used to fuck you. In all fairness to Bea, I know her only from the stories you tell so I shouldn’t really judge.

By now, it has become somewhat like a routine. I would stare at the ceiling and remember what I told you in the letter I gave you before you left two summers ago. “I don’t want to be your friend anymore,” I told you bluntly. “I don’t want a friend who knows me only when she needs a shoulder to cry on because she and Max had a fight, and completely takes me for granted otherwise.”

By now, it has become somewhat like a routine. And I realize that no matter how I tell myself that I have no business thinking about the hurt you might feel if you see them when you come back next sem, it doesn’t really work. I’m still worried for you.

By now, it has become somewhat like a routine.

I guess I still care for you.

I guess you’re still my friend.
 

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