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As if we were both Dying
Bronwen Griffiths

No one knows when the first humans kissed, or quite why we kiss, and some cultures do not kiss at all. There are theories, there are always theories, and then there are the lovers, the kissers. We admire these ten-thousand year old lovers hewn in stone, we watch them leaning into each other on the ancient chapel wall or kneeling in gold, their lips not yet touching, and we sigh at the beauty of their gestures, the passion and tenderness.


The Collision

The first kiss is not a brief touch of lips but a long evening of mouth to mouth, our limbs tangled together, as if we were both dying and in need of resuscitation. I desire an eternity of your kisses. I will not get this.


You kiss me one more time before you leave for good.


The Plan

The second kiss an attempt to blot out the first. Your parents are downstairs and I think of us more like friends than lovers but I must have this kiss to prove my heart is not breaking.


Later I lose my virginity to you. I do not have regrets. I have planned this - we have planned it. The clock ticks in the corner and it does not hurt as much as I expected and maybe it rains outside in the darkened street.



The third kiss finds me at the altar in a cream silk dress carrying a bouquet of pink roses. This is another attempt to blot out the first kiss, which stays with me like a bird lost in the sky.



The fourth kiss is treason but it is, like my first kiss, a kind of perfection. After we kiss, we sit watching the lights on the motorway and I shiver in the night-breeze and you offer me your jacket but I do not take it and this time I am the one who leaves.



Bronwen Griffiths writes longer form, and flash fiction. She has had two novels and two collections of flash fiction published. Her short pieces have been published both online and in a number of print anthologies in the UK and USA. She lives in East Sussex, UK. 

You can find more of her work on


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