Volume 19, Number 109
June/July 2016

Young Love
by Peter C. Joyce

They say for every boy and girl
There’s just one love in this whole world
And I know I’ve found mine

The heavenly touch of your embrace
Tells me no one could take your place
Ever in my heart

Young love, first love
Filled with deep devotion
Young love, our love
We share with deep emotion

Conversation lulled - eyes met - hands touched - arms reached out for each other. Their passion was volcanic.

Joy can be all too fleeting though. Llew soon found himself running for the bathroom to discard some extra beer. Head in the toilet, agony turned to ecstasy as Gwyn followed him there and held his hand and stroked his hair and whispered sweet nothings in his ear.

All good things come to an end sadly. Gwyn lay down upon the couch and shooed Llew off to his bedroom. The young lad lay for what seemed forever reliving the events of such an eventful evening.

Friday had certainly started off uneventful - school - supper - nap - got back up shortly after his parents went to bed. He’d no sooner sat down in the kitchen with a coffee than open went the door and in walked his oldest brother - with an incredibly beautiful young lady.

“Hey. This is Gwyn.” With that he plopped a case of beer in the fridge and headed off to bed.

Well, he was 22 and had just finished a long day at work followed by a long drive to pick up his girlfriend. Gwyn, on the other hand, seemed quite refreshed after a day at school. She joined Llew at the table. “Want a beer?” Her blue eyes twinkled.

They snapped a cap and embraced in conversation.

Gwyn was 17, going to a high school off to the west and just finishing Grade 11. Llew was a grade behind in a nearby school and in reality two years younger since he’d skipped a year in public school. He omitted telling her the latter fact. Since he was drinking beer, he wanted to seem more adult.

They cracked another brew and chattered about school in general. While reviewing their various courses, Gwyn expounded on how her history covered Classical Greekand Roman Civilization. Llew went weak in the knees. He was studying the 20th Century but had a life long love of ancient times. Hours flew by while they fended off Persians, marched over the Alps with elephants and sailed back and forth across the Mediterranean Sea.

Somewhere in the middle of the night, they ran out of beer - ran out of conversation - should have gone to bed. However, their eyes met ....

Llew awoke Saturday morning to animated conversation drifting up from the floor below. Dressed he got and wandered down. As he entered the kitchen, his mother positively beamed at him. “I guess you already know the big news.”

Llew certainly did know some big news, but he was reasonably sure he didn’t want to share it with his mother. Everyone seemed to be beaming. What on earth were they so happy about? And then he saw it. A rock on Gwyn’s ring finger. Good Lord, she was engaged. To his oldest brother. What had he done? Gwyn gave him a look. What in Heaven’s name did it mean? Llew was starting to feel a little queasy. Perhaps some fresh air ....

The day was fair. He walked deep into the country. The tall grass of the meadow brushed his legs, the breeze kissed his face and the sun beamed down upon his brow. His mood brightened even further when he entered the forest and followed the brook until it spilled into the pond. Throwing off his clothes, he doveinto its cool still waters, and swam and floated for hours on end.

At last he climbed onto the shore and started a small fire to warm back up. The flames encouraged him to ponder his past - his present - his future. Perhaps it was all just a dream. After all he did have a very fertile imagination. Feeling better he dressed and returned home.

His hope that Gwyn and his oldest brother would be long gone were immediately dashed. Apparently they were staying for supper. No problem. Nothing had really happened. Llew smiled and chatted with all and sundry.

Time passed. Gwyn hugged everyone when she left - including Llew. Sparks flew. Surely everyone noticed. Nobody seemed to. Whatever. She was gone and that was that.

Life returned to normal for Llew. Except for his dreams every night and his constant thoughts throughout the day. Who was he trying to kid? He was madly in love with Gwyn. But she was obviously in love with is older brother. What to do?

Next Friday his two older brothers decided they were heading west to party in a big city in America. Llew bid them adieu thinking how nice it would be to curl up with a good book and lose his troubles in fantasy. No such luck. His brothers picked him up and tossed him in the car. Apparently he was going with them. Oh well, at least it would keep his mind off Gwyn.

Or not. They stopped to pick her up. She breezed into the back seat beside Llew. Her hand quietly found his. They floated off into a world known only to themselves. The border flew by with ease. They were kinder gentler times. Before they knew it, the car was parked on a quiet side street and the older brothers popped into a bar for a quick beer. Llew knew they’d be gone for a long time.

He turned to Gwyn. “I have something I have to tell you.”

She shushed his lips first with her finger and then with her lips. Her long blonde hair floated about his. Their bodies entwined. Hours melted away. By the time the brothers returned, the lovers’ cheeks were still flushed but otherwise they appeared quite prim and proper. They chatted amicably on the return trip, all the while secretly holding hands in the dark.

Over the weeks to come, Gwyn seemed to manage to spend more time with Llew than she did with her fiance. Llew was confused but ecstatic. One minute he felt oh so conspiratorial. The next he was convinced that everyone knew exactly what was going on. What was going on? Perhaps somebody could explain it to him.

He wanted ever so much to confess his true feelings to Gwyn, but she always seemed to be able to anticipate his every overture and ward him off. For the life of him, Llew couldn’t figure out what she was thinking or feeling or what motivated her. He did know that he was having the time of his life and had never been happier.

Llew did suspect the whole affair would not end well.

One weekend his oldest brother insisted they double date. Llew tried ever so hard to get out of it but failed. Off they went to pick up Gwyn and then a friend of hers. They took in a drive-in, and did some cuddling and kissing. Nobody’s heart seemed in it though. Llew would much rather have been with Gwyn and hoped she was feeling the same way.

At last the evening ended. Llew’s date was dropped off. They drove to Gwyn’s house. There seemed to be a chill in the air in more ways than one. His brother turned to Gwyn: “I don’t want to marry you. I don’t want to see you again.”

Llew was stunned.

Angry words were exchanged in the front seat.

Gwyn took off her engagement ring, threw it on the floor and exited their lives with the final retort: “I never loved you anyway. It was always Llew that I was in love with.”

Llew started to go after her, but his brother started the car and barrelled off down the laneway before he could open the door.

Nobody ever discussed Gwyn again. Llew was young and confused and knew not what to do. He loved her and wanted to see her but how. No licence - no car - no hope.

Eventually he had all three but heard that Gwyn was married. Perhaps it was for the best. A wonderful life awaited Llew. He wished the same for Gwyn. Every once in a while though he’d drift back in time with a fond recollection of his young love, his first love.

Just one kiss from your sweet lips
Will tell me that our love is real
And I can feel that it’s true

For we will vow to one another
There will never be another
Love for you or for me

Young love, first love
Filled with deep devotion
Young love, our love
We share with deep emotion

Young love, first love
Filled with deep devotion
Young love, first love
Filled with deep devotion
Sonny James