A Few Short Words

Dense Not Thick




I often forget that people aren’t made up of my experiences and I wear myself out digging expository foundations for them. It’s not that I’m esoteric or eclectic, but the body of my life stands slightly aside the accepted practice of living. Even simple jokes land like a bricked window if they’re lucky enough to hit at all. What’s the difference between me and cancer, I might say, well, there’s a chance you’ll actually get cancer. Of course nobody laughs, not even me, and I wonder if they’re right, maybe sadness isn’t that funny, but how would I know?


I stand outside, watching her move through the mesh screen guarding the kitchen. It’s not our home, we’re dwelling. Sparsely furnished, fully occupied, the owners lives present from board to mortar. Watching her wearing it, an adult playing dress up. One day, I say, I will build this for you. Brick by brick in deed and metaphor. ‘My love,’ she says, a smile’s softness severing all my muscles. ‘As is proper, we’ll build it together.’ Watching her form through the gauze, the house lights define her filigree. You are my heart, I say. ‘Then we already have a foundation.’

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