July 5th: If Someone Held a Parade…

If someone held a parade in your honour, I’d be the Grand Marshal. I would learn to play the trumpet and my harmonies would soar throughout the land. I would learn to properly twirl a baton and do so while wearing my most regal marching uniform, out of respect for you. People everywhere would gather in enthusiastic throngs and confetti you with enormous red roses and I would take your hand, with permission, and lead you through Churchill Square as the band struck up a rousing tune. Even though you have lived here for years, I would sit you beside me in a gilded chariot and drive it through the city’s downtown core as people cheered and waved; you would get to see the city as a king would see it: as if you owned it all.

The parade would carry on until it blossomed into a party held just for you. Balloon bouquets in your favourite colours – deep sea green, bright royal blue, cool crisp white – would bob and float atop the feathery summer breezes; children would don dresses and tiny little suits and present you with gifts from distinguished individuals; everyone would dance in the town square and drink pricey champagne. And you would be at the centre of everything, grinning back at all those who love you.

A beautiful lady would take your hand; thin and slender and elegant, with the corners of her eyes upturned into a coquettish, dramatic stare. At first she would look at you from afar but you would beckon to her with your regal strength and masculinity and she would present herself to you. Her hair would cascade down her back like a mermaid’s tail and her dress would glow brilliantly as if spun of the very moonlight under which you both stood. She would smile at you with thin, glimmering pink lips and you would hold her loosely and lightly, enrobing her in a first dance. The specators would watch you, inspired by your love; at first sight, they would claim naively. Everyone would discuss with hurried whispers of the identity of this beautiful girl, who stepped out from behind bunches of violets, and soared so easily into your  arms.

I would sit on a seventeenth-floor roof top, overlooking the festivities that I had started, seemingly with just a wave of my very non-magical hand; smelling pastries and fragrant petals in the summer air, hearing music and counting the billowing balloons with my index finger. Someone would let one go – one single blue one – and as it skyrocketed up into the air, I’d catch it. Looking down at my fingers clutching the string, I would suddenly realize I was still in my Grand Marshal uniform. My jacket was stifling in all its red and gold and buckles and buttons, its smart trim catching the light of the sallow lamps overhead casting beams which were filled with wayward alabastar moths. I would hold it tightly as I looked down once again at the wonderful you, with that mystery girl and my eyes would behold tears. But all the while, my face – my unimpressive, plain, homely face, half-covered in a thicket of black bangs, hot to the touch under my tall Marshal hat, would be lit up in one of my largest-ever smiles; the kind of smile that hurts at the corners and pinches the apples of one’s cheeks until they glow red.

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