Stay Just a Little Bit Longer

It was a very in-between time. I was mostly on my own, spending time in the Village, but still traveling uptown to my friends in the Bronx and Riverside. I was still very much in love with Danielle, Danny, but she had her sights firmly set on Harvard while mine was set on, well I don’t know what. I was between visions of the world and would be for several more years. In the meantime, I was experiencing a life my academically inclined friends would never comprehend. In college, they would read “On the Road” by Kerouac. I would live on the road and tell you where Jack cut out the good parts. But that was still in my future.

Tonight I was on my way to my last date with Danny. We both agreed that it was time to end it. Reluctantly on my part, firm and resolute on hers. Harvard was only part of it. Her parents dreaded the though to me as a possible son in law. Danny, could not see a future in which I behaved like a responsible adult. And I couldn’t see a future in which I acted like the responsible adult they expected. So the end.

As a group, we were going to a dance. Looking back to that time, it’s interesting to see all my friends emerging from adolescence into adulthood. Clint had a job at Xerox. Michelle was continuing her study of dance, and Danny was looking forward to the fall semester at Harvard. Young adults in the offing.

I have few memories of the dance itself. Things resolved into focus when the band began to play the song “Stay.” That song made whole my feelings about the night, the relationship, and my hopes for a future I was cut off from. One part of me wanted to drag time backward to have again what we all had had together, but of course, I couldn’t.

None of us could “stay.” We were all little eighteen-year-old rocketships bound to see the universe.

 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kWRtyAgt-u4

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