My first kiss was with a boy from Montana named Paul. I was 14. My friend Kristi and I were on a skiing trip with her parents and I met Paul in the kid’s lounge of our hotel in Reno, the biggest little city in the world. After a night of what must have been stimulating conversation, Paul knocked on the door of my room and asked if he could kiss me. I was wearing baggy sweatpants and a pink T-shirt that had the letter L written in rhinestones (they didn’t have an H and I really loved the shirt). I said yes. What followed was catastrophic and thrilling. I suppose you could call it a make out, but it’d look more like one if you slowed it down to quarter speed. It was so frantic and unpracticed.
This was pre-cell phone, so I had to wait days to tell my friends about it. The utterly poor quality of the kiss had no bearing on my level of excitement, which was just outside of Earth’s atmosphere. Back then, attention from a boy was nearly indiscernible, emotionally, from attention from a boy I actually liked. A boy was a boy, a kiss was a kiss. I felt like I’d won the lottery.
Maybe all first kisses are both electrifying and awful. By definition, must they be? In case that juxtaposition lent itself well to prose, I asked 17 people to tell me about their first kisses in haiku, and wrote my own too. Click through above and then add your own below. And in case you missed our past poetic endeavors, read our haikus about losing our virginity, going through puberty and our boobs.
A special thanks to teen braces for making this story possible.
Graphics by Maria Jia Ling Pitt.