Light (And the Inevitability of Illumination)

April 27, 2008
Streams of sunlight peeked through the cracks and creases
of the curtains, intentionally dark and shut tight against
the brash and crumbling life outside of her bedroom.
Her slimmed body lay buried in blankets and broken in pieces.

But she could not counter the persistance of sunlight,
which has more tricks than it's simplicity leads you to believe.

It danced along the weathered hardwood floors
before collapsing, finally, in a heap atop her eyelids-
entangling itself in her sticky, matted hair and causing her freckles to glow:
contrasted vacationers on a face the color of sand, pure and pale, but too weathered,
as if she had transformed simply to fit in with her surroundings.

She laid numb next to the imprint of his body in the mattress,
holding her eyes shut until she couldn't resist the inevitable daytime any longer.
She let her feet slide flat onto the cold-morning floor and drifted
towards the source of light: taunting her stubborn determination to hide.

In the mornings, he used to wake her, singing "You Are My Sunshine,"
raspy after a lifetime of cherry tobacco wrapped only
in the best papers bought in Boston's finest smoke shops-
but his voice was escaping her now, and she was afraid that it would be buried,
with time, under six feet of dirt, along with his fishing pole and his nine iron.

On the balcony she sat in a lawn chair, placed with no purpose for beauty,
but only for comfort in looking out at the pond, from where he had returned
so many times holding a catch fit for dinner.
She clutched the zippo tightly in her left hand, and used the right to aid her
in filling her lungs with the smoldering output of burning tobacco, flavored with the essesnce of cherry.

For the first time in weeks, she allowed the sunlight to pour over her shoulders.

She didn't smoke cigars,
But she could still smell like him for a while, if she wanted.

She flicked away the filter and sucked clean air deep into her lungs:
today, she was here- she was breathing, and like the sun, she would rise again.
But today, he wasn't coming back.

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