Twelve years ago I was working as a stage manager at a theatre company in
I had this crush on, or love for, this actor at the theatre in
David left that summer before I did. We took him to the bus station, and I cried because I was 18 and dramatic. I watched him go and I felt bereft. My friends and I returned to the falling-apart cabin in the woods that had been our home that summer. I went to the room where I had a bunk bed. Hanging on my bunk was that button-down shirt, his shirt! Tucked inside the shirt pocket was a note. He told me I was beautiful and a creature of light.
Doesn't it just kill you? Can you imagine an 18-year-old girl coming back from the bus station to her room and seeing that the guy she loved had left his shirt for her? He knew. He just knew, and it was beautiful.
I always write in the shirt because it makes me feel as if I have a secret. When you write, it's good to have a secret because in a way you do. You have to nurture the secret until other people know about it. Maybe wearing this shirt connects me with a part of my younger self that was incredibly emotional and vivid, and those feelings, combined with that sense of having a secret, is how I like to feel when I write.
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