w: ajleon

Shall I Compare Thee to a Summer’s Day

Those were the first five words I spoke to the love of my life on the fourth of January in 2008.

What followed was the only type of poetry I have ever written. A young and inarticulate man’s attempt to excavate the virtue of the only Love he has ever known. To a woman who’s vicinity is enough to arrest his spirit, to a girl whom he has known forever but learns more from every day.

There are those in life that bring us repose by simply being, by inhaling and exhaling and existing in the same space and in the same time as we do.

To me, that’s my Melissa.

And today is her birthday.

Today, I am celebrating a woman whose grace and beauty and light knows no equal. A woman who changes me without trying, who brings me serenity without knowing, who has held me up at the depths of my lowest and who has clenched my hand in the face of insurmountable odds.

I am celebrating a woman whose mere presence reminds me each morning to breathe every last breath with intention.

I am celebrating the love of my life, my business partner, my editor, my stage manager, my best friend, my fellow nomad and my muse. Who has worked beside me in trendy offices in New York and mud huts in Ethiopia. Who has spent nights with me under bus benches in London and five star resorts in Prague.

Who reinvented a life with me.

And had the courage to build it from scratch.


A couple days before our wedding, I called Melissa from a busy Manhattan street corner just outside the office and the Life that had held me captive for so many years. I told her that she was about to marry an unemployed banker, a refugee from a life gone horribly wrong.

And I’ll never forget what she said.

Well, let’s start picking out spots under the Brooklyn Bridge with good views of the city. Because I’d rather live with the real you under there, than an impersonation of you anywhere else. 

I’m just glad I have you back. 


In my universe, the planets don’t orbit around the Sun.

I love you, Melissa. I always have. I always will.

Happy Birthday, my love.


I hope you’ll join me in wishing her a happy 30th birthday today. See you next week. 🙂


From Stratford-on-Avon

Your Fellow Misfit,



Image: Girl in Paris 

409 words



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