The Decision…I wiped my hands on my pinaforenow sullied and stainednot crisp or pressedas it had been before…
He was talking about my hands and how I should receive the ball. The rap on me is my throwing. He said he is going to make me an accurate thrower to second base. I have the arm strength, but I haven't had the accuracy. We talked about the correct form. It was different information than I ever heard before.
A Kiss”:I went to snatch my hand away, but Trent caught my hand in his, startling me. I looked up to see warmth on his face. His smile held the promise of happiness. He scooted closer and held my gaze for a breath, glanced down. He leaned forward, as if he had no control over his actions. I inhaled his nice, soapy-clean scent, and all coherent thought left my head.His hands gripped my waist and Trent yanked me against him, his mouth covering mine in a deep kiss. The caress of his lips was softer than I’d imagined. An unfamiliar rush of excitement engulfed my senses. My hands wrapped around his neck, fingering his silky tousled hair. His moist lips seared a path from my lips to my neck, igniting a blaze of desire that flooded my skin everywhere his lips and roaming hands touched. Boys had kissed me before, but not like this. Never like this...
I paid the taxi driver, got out with my suitcase, surveyed my surroundings, and just as I was turning to ask the driver something or get back into the taxi and return forthwith to Chillán and then to Santiago, it sped off without warning, as if the somewhat ominous solitude of the place had unleashed atavistic fears in the driver's mind. For a moment I too was afraid. I must have been a sorry sight standing there helplessly with my suitcase from the seminary, holding a copy of Farewell's Anthology in one hand. Some birds flew out from behind a clump of trees. They seemed to be screaming the name of that forsaken village, Querquén, but they also seemed to be enquiring who: quién, quién, quién. I said a hasty prayer and headed for a wooden bench, there to recover a composure more in keeping with what I was, or what at the time I considered myself to be. Our Lady, do not abandon your servant, I murmured, while the black birds, about twenty-five centimetres in length, cried quién, quién, quién. Our Lady of Lourdes, do not abandon your poor priest, I murmured, while other birds, about ten centimetres long, brown in colour, or brownish, rather, with white breasts, called out, but not as loudly, quién, quién, quién, Our Lady of Suffering, Our Lady of Insight, Our Lady of Poetry, do not leave your devoted subject at the mercy of the elements, I murmured, while several tiny birds, magenta, black, fuchsia, yellow and blue in colour, wailed quién, quién, quién, at which point a cold wind sprang up suddenly, chilling me to the bone.
WRITER'S NIGHTMARE""I felt a grip on my arm that shook my body, forcefully pulling me toward a tunnel of darkness. The threat of consciousness stole my steady breath. For a moment I believed myself to be under siege; ripped from the sky in mid flight, my wings useless against the monstrous claws shredding my reality. I struggled to remain, to be left alone, aloft. Reaching with wings that through the power of imagination were suddenly feathered arms, I grabbed at the air. My hands clutched at something solid. Wooden. A desk. My head spun as I held the furniture, suffering the illusion of falling. "I was flying," I gasped, realizing suddenly that it had all been a dream. "My best fantasy ever." Lifting my head from its resting spot on the writing desk, I worked mentally to secure the fading images, hoping to capture their essence to memory before they faded away forever. Bitterness tainted my heart against the hand that had jerked me into sensibility. Why was I always so callously awakened while doing my best work? Why not let me dream?
I return my attention to the situation at hand and realize Reality—the impatient bitch—has made my decision for me. She does that a lot. You get busy planning your life, then it has the nerve to just go ahead and happen to you before you’re ready. Before you even get the chance to aim yourself right!
I pushed passed him. He grabbed my hand and swung me back towards him. Then he pushed me against the wall and... he kissed me.He ran his thumb along my jawline and down my throat, hips pinning me to the wall. He kissed me slowly and with intensity, and once I got over the mind-numbing shock and comprehended what was actually happening, it was incredible. I had never been kissed like that before. We melted together. Every movement of mine was somehow perfectly mirrored by his. My heart was pounding so hard I knew he must be able to feel it and I was sure my legs were giving way, but he held me up, pushed me harder against the wall.I grabbed a handful of his hair, remembering all the times I'd dreamed of doing it. I let my hand drift down his back and pulled him even closer to me. It all happened so quickly. I heard him make a low kind of growl and lean into me. His hand slid down my leg behind my knee, drawing it to him. I moaned and felt him tense.
Reminiscing in the drizzle of Portland, I notice the ring that’s landed on your finger, a massiveinsect of glitter, a chandelier shining at the endof a long tunnel. Thirteen years ago, you hid the hurtin your voice under a blanket and said there’s two kindsof women—those you write poems aboutand those you don’t. It’s true. I never brought youa bouquet of sonnets, or served you haiku in bed.My idea of courtship was tapping Jane’s Addictionlyrics in Morse code on your window at three A.M., whiskey doing push-ups on my breath. But I workedwithin the confines of my character, castas the bad boy in your life, the Magellanof your dark side. We don’t have a past so muchas a bunch of electricity and liquor, powernever put to good use. What we had togethermakes it sound like a virus, as if we caughtone another like colds, and desire was merelya symptom that could be treated with soupand lots of sex. Gliding beside you now, I feel like the Benjamin Franklin of monogamy, as if I invented it, but I’m still not immuneto your waterfall scent, still haven’t developedantibodies for your smile. I don’t know how longregret existed before humans stuck a word on it.I don’t know how many paper towels it would taketo wipe up the Pacific Ocean, or why the lightof a candle being blown out travels fasterthan the luminescence of one that’s just been lit, but I do know that all our huffing and puffinginto each other’s ears—as if the brain was a trickbirthday candle—didn’t make the silenceany easier to navigate. I’m sorry all the kissesI scrawled on your neck were writtenin disappearing ink. Sometimes I thought of youso hard one of your legs would pop outof my ear hole, and when I was sleeping, you’d pressyour face against the porthole of my submarine.I’m sorry this poem has taken thirteen yearsto reach you. I wish that just once, instead of skiddingoff the shoulder blade’s precipice and joyridingover flesh, we’d put our hands away like chocolateto be saved for later, and deciphered the calligraphyof each other’s eyelashes, translated a paragraphfrom the volumes of what couldn’t be said.
I looked at him nonplussed. I realized that I have spent so many years being on a diet that the idea that you might actually need calories to survive has been completely wiped out of my consciousness. Have reached point where believe nutritional idea is to eat nothing at all, and that the only reason people eat is because they are so greedy they cannot stop themselves from breaking out and ruining their diets.
I plastered on my best poker face, attempting to appear cool and casual even thought I had never been so eager to deliver two Chicken Parmagianas in my life."Just be careful, hon," Rosanna said."Oh, are the plates hot?" I flinched back just before my hands made contact.Rosanna laughed. "No, but hot boys can burn just as easily.
Can I tell my daughter that I loved her father? This was the man who rubbed my feet at night. He praised the food that I cooked. He cried honestly when I brought out trinkets I had saved for the right day, the day he gave me my daughter, a tiger girl.How could I not love this man? But it was a love of a ghost. Arms that encircled but did not touch. A bowl full of rice but without my appetite to eat it. No hunger. No fullness.Now Saint is a ghost. He and I can now love equally. He knows the things I have been hiding all these years. Now I must tell my daughter everything. That she is a daughter of a ghost. She has no chi . This is my greatest shame. How can I leave this world without leaving her my spirit?So this is what I will do. I will gather together my past and look. I will see a thing that has already happened. The pain that cut my spirit loose. I will hold that pain in my hand until it becomes hard and shiny, more clear. And then my fierceness can come back, my golden side, my black side. I will use this sharp pain to penetrate my daughter's tough skin and cut her tiger spirit loose. She will fight me, because this is the nature of two tigers. But I will win and give her my spirit, because this is a way a mother loves her daughter.I hear my daughter speaking to her husband downstairs. They say words that mean nothing. They sit in a room with no life in it. I know a thing before it happens. She will hear the table and vase crashing on the floor. She will come upstairs and into my room. Her eyes will see nothing in the darkness, where I am waiting between the trees.