There was that one night we slept on a roof.
There must have been over a dozen of us
and we were so excited
and we must have looked so tiny
dragging our mattresses up to the top.
Out in the open, but hopeful, but untouched.
Glowing with happiness and the knowledge that we were alive,
on a roof,
And we laughed so hard
and we were so young
but we were beautiful.
I remember the summer air and how we huddled together for warmth
but she kept stealing the covers so I just embraced the cold
because I felt invincible,
and the breeze on my skin only made me laugh harder.
I remember the feeling
because I’ve spent years trying to find that kind of peace
and failed every time
because it’s not the kind of peace you can go looking for.
I remember the clocks ticking
and the city sleeping
and how we didn’t want morning to come,
how I wanted it to last forever,
how certain I was that I could live forever
from up there.
There’s this quote I found in an old notebook and it goes,
“You told me that you liked being up high enough that people couldn’t get to you,”
and maybe that’s how I felt up on that roof.
Safe up high
but open to the world and people and myself
and the city
and a lot more than what I would have dreamed of back then.
I had a lot of dreams, that summer,
maybe for the first time in a while.
I also chased them for the first time in a while,
and for that I don’t have the roof to thank but myself.
I think she’d be proud of me.
The girl who spent that night staring at the stars
and listening to the city sing
the girl who swore she knew what she wanted to do with her life
the girl who found a way to be okay again that summer
the girl who loved being up high enough that people couldn’t get to her,
she’d be so proud.