In passing

“For the wind blows wherever it pleases… You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going.” (John 3:8)

1. The photographs she took reminded her with a start: there was a house below the gate to the army base. There was a discotheque in the basement, back in the day when the word was a kind of novelty.

2. One day, they took a walk to the co-op store to buy bread; someone had written on the chalkboard that skinned rabbits were available. On the way back, she picked dry pine needles from the road. She did not ask what was in the dinner stew.

3. When the wind blows sometimes, it brings the insides to the surface— carries the stench of open sewers. You take a breath, you clench, unclench.

4. Our neighbor’s daughter thrilled to see the chef toss cleavers, eggs, whole shrimp at the hibachi grill. Metal struck against metal and the heated surfaces of the stove. All show, all show. No real danger in the onion ring volcano, lit to miniature flared explosions.

5. The brass bell swings: small rings of sound under the dogwood.

6. She misses nights sleeping under white mosquito netting, the edges tucked around the mattress; the smell of starched, woven cotton.

7. Dreams and portents: a hand coming out of the dark, searching for another to clasp.

8. Warmer nights now, warmer mornings. Humidity you can smell, rising around the flagstones.


In response to small stone (87).

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