“you do not believe me but I swear to God.” He looked at me, the streetlight from across the well worn dirt road that separates my house from Mary Tiah’s casting shadows across his face. She and part of her family sat just out of earshot on their front porch.

“when a Liberian man swears to God and does this,” He touched his hand lightly to the ground to his lips and then up in the air, “it is very serious.”

I smiled at him. What words are there for someone professing love at first sight? I’d already explained my definition of love involves knowing someone – loving what you know. He countered that love is a feeling that cannot be called down but comes of its own volition. That is his definition, who am I to argue?

It didn’t change my mind. My definition. My feelings for the almost stranger sitting on my steps asking me to ask him to stay longer, to invite him back, to call.

He explained fervently that he didn’t want my love so that he could go to America, he only wanted me to stay in Liberia and get married and have children (why does everyone want me to reproduce?)

I was tired. The super bowl kept me up past 4am and it will be days before I’m fully recovered. I smiled as alertly as I could and wished him a safe journey.

“may I kiss you…on your jaw here?” he pointed to his own defined jawline.


And so he did, lips soft against the side of my face. “and the other side?” I acquiesced.

“and here?” he placed his hand lightly over his lips.




“does it mean something?”

“goodbye,” I rose from the steps – still releasing the day’s heat despite the coolness in the night air- and walked him to the bottom step before turning and closing first the screen and then the door behind me.

Tags: , ,

4 Comments on First sight

  1. LaDawn says:

    What is my new brother-in-law’s name. Do I need to get with daddy to start gathering goats for your dowry. Let us know now….you can’t spring something like that on us, it will take us a while to get the goats together!!!

    LMBO–I crack myself UP!!!!

  2. sza says:

    LaDawn – you crack me up! When I saw comments at the end of this post, I just had to click and read. Thanks for the laugh! Ah, siblings…
    Nea – make sure to check that he has all his teeth…

  3. dtang says:

    love your musings on life!

Leave a Reply