He Already Knew

“It’s… nothing,” her delicate hands crumpled the white slip, hiding away the swirling handwritten lines. Behind her back she clutched the tiny bundle, rocking back on her heels self-consciously, yet maintaining that cat-like grace.

His hand was there, warm and large as he took her elbow and drew her hand into his. There, he carefully unfolded her unwilling fingers, one at a time, until the paper was free. If she had looked, she would have known the reassurance on his face was meant for her. But she was too afraid.

Reverently, he took it out of her hand, handled it like fine china, unfolded it, beheld it like a rare feather. He smiled as he read it. She didn’t see, heart fluttering.

“Just a poem, it’s stupid…” her voice trembled.

“Aw… and for a minute I felt special,” he said mirthfully, then quietly sang the song playing across her heartstrings.

“Shut my eyes tight
wishing for your strong arms.
Hold me close till daylight
keep me safe from all harms…”

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