Lonely No Longer
My suitcase is unopened but the sky yearns through the white window. The paint is still peeling. Of course. She and he and they move around me, unpacking, and I slip from the cabin and let the door fall closed with a slam. A moment later, “don’t let the door bang!” A mosquito slips through a hole in the frame. The familiarity of nineteen summers greets me flush faced like a kiss on the mouth. Pink cheeks, cinnamon freckles. My nose peels by the end of the week.
Under my feet, the dock shakes. It’s still here – though as I walk to the edge, I feel my feet give underneath me. Sway to the right, sway to the left (you are going to be okay, as gentle as a mother’s slow rock). Back and forth, back and forth. It creaks like a fifty year old body. And beyond, below: green light, minnows thick as spring petals. I close my eyes and see the water under my skin. (here a remembrance: I lie on the sun-warmed wood and scoop crayfish from the marina’s underbelly with my net. I am six and gleaming with the promise of boiled crab – almost the same, I reason – dipped in melted butter).
Do you remember, I ask him later. Of course, he says. Of course. We sit at the same table, except this year, our feet touch bottom. Safety, I whisper, or thank you – to the sky or water or small perch weaving through billowing reeds. Later a sky of flames doused with sea – I reason – returns the kiss.