With nothing to throw between us, I was hard-pressed to figure out how to give us the privacy we required at this time. Naturally, with our history, our sleeping arrangements felt awkward.
Regardless, our anxiety finally calmed, attaining a lull under the backdrop of a rising moon; we were both soon asleep in the space we had created.
But our slumber was interrupted by what sounded like an old victrola playing a scratchy, broken record, droning on loudly. However shaken we felt, we remained mute as we watched a shadow pass by us gracefully, totally in step with the music.
Sharon was very cross with Uri, as evidenced by her unrelenting insults. A waste of a beautiful exotic place, he thought to himself. But the secrets Uri kept made a fool out of her, and he knew it. This resort wouldn’t be a haven for them but rather a place they would end.
Pulling down his hat to cover his eyes, hoping, by chance, a resort attendant would seek them out for a drink order, distracting her mean temper. But no, she continued to wave her bony finger in his face and shame him with all the rumors she’d heard.
let’s be mindful
stop all this judging
cool heads prevailing is an art
be still, be in the moment
as if on film, act right
demonstrable like a slight breeze
but wire your jaw shut if need be
leave your opponent with a puzzle
rather than let your mouth betray you
blinders are not needed, but filters are
let your mind rationally come to the table
before you end up on the ground
Above the feast, a curious owl perched on a hollow branch observed us suspiciously. It lifted everyone’s spirits to see his round face, a surprise on this unjoyous occasion. The warning crack of the branch’s fragility shocked us as we watched the bird cautiously inch sideways, moving closer to the trunk. He was just too heavy. Like us with all the ache of mourning our loved one.
We refocused on the preparation of the sacred ritual. One by one, the candles were lit, and the covers of our hoods lifted as we summoned the healing power of the goddess Isis.
“Enough with the drama, Jackie! Why bundle up all your emotions until we’re all together, then proceed to cross the line of decency every time?” Turning to the dishes, I immersed my hands in the water, deliberately refocusing. Like a ghost, she flitted away, likely feeling attacked. Ah, some peace now.
The radiant sun, my mother’s true idol, bathed the kitchen with brilliant light. It put me in a reflective mood pulling out the baking stone while the wind-filled curtains created strange flickering patterns against the stove. Sneaking a taste of the frosting, I began to meander in my memories.
After hearing a thud, my impulse was to hide or disguise myself. I knew how cruel Chucky was, having witnessed him many times crossing every line of decency. Now was the time for some magic, in other words, my immediate disappearance, or he would stalk me too.
But with this ongoing monsoon, I was probably safer here. I needed to get to the library with its secret chambers. My hunch was he didn’t know about them. Hopefully, I was correct.
With lights flickering because of the storm, I made my move. Upon reaching safety, I let out a hefty sigh.
The strong breeze carried the seeds away after causing the dandelion’s stem to sway violently. Tears began to bleed from my eyes, producing liquid clouds hindering my view. This scene viscerally brought back a bittersweet memory, a sadly uplifting boon to my psyche. Yet, I wonder—when will I get my reprieve from the anguish of the past?
The tree branches above my head clashed together like the rhythmic grinding of my teeth masticating a small square of beef jerky. I watched the swift stream of the river as my conflicting emotions began to climb and tangle again.
Let it go…
Timothy finds the chicory plant downstream when he hears the screams. His blood freezes, and the flesh and the hairs on his arms stand rigid. After a bit, he rose, listening intently. It had become eerily silent.
Ah, probably a fox just whining, Timothy muses to himself out loud, entering the camp. He began to slice up the chicory and aloe vera to put on the burns on his leg. Who knew eggs from a chicken womb could be so dangerous?
The love of his life wakes, faces him with a smile, and pins a gentle kiss on his leg.
These roads tell stories; taking a breath, I close my eyes and wait. My hands and feet, like roots taking hold, become one with the earth. This isn’t my first contact with Gaia.
This thirst for understanding, as if guided by a chain, pulls on me; I feel her wanting to share her secrets. On meadows and beaches, in forests, and in any place filled with her essence, I run barefoot to feel one with her, never having to feign a connection.
The distant stars flicker, millions of years apart from me, yet still, so close, have me feeling awe.
lay with me instead
her heart yearning for me
shone in her eyes
the rain outside pitter-pattering harmony
as the stretch between us narrowed
my arm embraced the fold of her voluptuousness
the door to my heart opening
the lilies i’d picked for her yesterday
held neatly in the vase on her dresser
maintained the lingering scent in her room
we both inhaled and sighed
the intoxication of everything right
urged me to capture her long legs
and narrow wrists with my embrace
dozing was ever further from our minds
with mounting tension and heavy breathing
like a ship on fierce waters
our bodies rocked with abandon
until we lay wrecked on our bed