My Greatest Memory

It was March of 1984, the spring term. It had started well. Julia and I got on nicely although we were never lovers or that close. We looked into each other’s eyes. That was very romantic but it never got better than that. She was ambitious and wanted to ‘get on with her life’ and I was just ordinary, with no clue what I wanted to do. We would bump into each other and smile shyly but then suddenly I didn’t see her around so much. She was clearly keeping to ground, involved in her new standing as college newspaper editor elect. I was sad. I wanted to see her. I don’t know what I felt for her at the time, but it was quite deep. There were only three more weeks till the end of term and then it was holiday time and then it was the last term and Finals. I had to try and forget her and start concentrating on that. I was very sad and went around in a daze. Time passed quickly. No sign of her. She seemed to have totally disappeared. It was very sad. I had put it away as a lost cause. Then my friend Nigel intervened. I helped him with his relationship. He seemed to have good true feelings for my friend Margaret. Margaret and I weren’t getting along. We clashed badly over Julia and it wasn’t very pretty, but I still thought she and Nigel would be good together. Then Nigel said I should try harder with Julia. I was rather taken aback. I can’t remember why. I felt that he was having a go at me when I was trying to help him. I had decided to give up on Julia, very very sadly, but Nigel convinced me I should try again. Unfortunately I took him to his word and started making stupid moves. I left a note in her pigeonhole saying ‘long time no see, would you like to come with me to Kenwood.’ I totally regret this move. Kenwood was two miles away and it was a stupid idea and could never have worked. Why did I suggest it? It was unhinged. Then the last day of term came. I was so keen to see her. I bumped into her and wished her a happy holiday but her answer was so deadpan, but I was in love and couldn’t hear it. I wanted so much to know if there was any chance, any spark. Everyone else would have said there wasn’t but I was in love. I knew that I had to know more because I knew I had to spend the holiday revising and I needed to know. Then the disastrous calamity, my greatest memory. I went to her room and was about to knock when she came out. I muttered that I had forgotten to wish her a happy Easter. She just stood there amazed and said she wished I would leave her alone. I was shocked and taken aback and asked her if she really meant it. She did. She walked off, taking my heart with her.

Everything in my subsequent life goes back to that meeting. All I want to do is to hear her say that she has forgiven me and would like to see me again. It was a long, long time ago, but that’s love for you. It makes you do such things. Now, it is six breakdowns later in which I have thought that we would meet and be happy together. Maybe one day the gods will look kindly on me and bring her back and that I can show her that I was alright and someone to know and to love. Will I forget her? Probably not. Should I forget her? Probably but only if someone comes along and that isn’t looking very likely, so I am happy just to dream on that one day we can be together forever.

This piece was written by Henry Wordsworth in our Creative Writing Group.


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