Sunday, March 16, 2014

Just Kissing

They were happier, all the mouths I saw that woke up one day and mostly forgot what they were for besides just kissing. 
       There is a line our society seems to say a lot, "just kissing". As if because it's not sex and because you aren't (necessarily) naked, it's "just" kissing. Except, any romantic will tell you that holding hands or exchanging glances is the beginning of any love story. Let there be no mistake, there is nothing "just"-so about kissing. 
        It is an act that is socially accepted enough to be done [almost] anywhere at anytime, but intimate enough that in those few seconds a private world is created. It's a way to communicate, a way to feel as though you aren't alone, or a way to feel as though you are, if the moment calls for a more personal need. It's a way to say goodbye and hello. It's a way to show love. There are lingering glances before the eyes close, there are moments of brief hesitation. There are commonplace kisses and the best type of unexpected kisses. 

“It wasn't that long, and it certainly wasn't the kind of kiss you see in movies these days, but it was wonderful in its own way, and all I can remember about the moment is that when our lips touched, I knew the memory would last forever.” 
Nicholas Sparks, A Walk to Remember
        There probably isn't a way to sum up A Walk to Remember, a coming of age novel written by Nicholas Sparks, that will do the book justice, but I have tried. After many discipline infractions, we meet the male lead, a rebellious high schooler, Landon, who is threatened with expulsion unless he participates in the school drama production. It is there that he meets Jamie, a girl who is studious and shy. She is supposed to help him with his lines. Over time, they begin to form a deep friendship despite living two very different social lives during the school day. When Landon denied being friends with Jamie in front of his friends, she said her friendship was over with him – she didn’t need a secret friend who was ashamed of her. A few weeks later, Landon learns Jamie has terminal leukemia. He goes back to her – this time publically – and once again their friendship deepens – this time to love. He helps Jamie complete almost all the things on her bucket list – seeing a comet, getting a tattoo, even marriage, etc. Eventually, Jamie dies. Four years later, Landon visits Jamie's father and says that he is still a better person because of Jamie. Landon tells him that he is sorry Jamie never got to complete the final item on her bucket list: the wish to witness a miracle. Jamie's father tells him that she did, in fact, witness one: love. 

Kiss Me (1997), Sixpence None The Richer 

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