What is it like to be so in love?

What is it like to be so in love?

We’re in the shower. Holding tight. Hot taps running down skin. Between our fingers and toes. Then: We’re falling into fresh sheets on the feather bed, our bodies wrapped up tight in blankets, surrounded by pillows. There’s a small bar at the end of the block. An old-and-rickety place that smells like cigarettes still – though cigarettes have been banned indoors for years. It’s hot in this bar. Because it’s so small. And. So full of people. Even (especially) in winter. When people yell for drinks and cheer their favorite teams playing basketball on the TV overhead. Potato chips hang from the wall behind the bottles; the only thing they have to eat. There’s a dartboard in the back – slightly crooked, like an open mouth with sharp teeth. We throw darts and I let her win. Then she lets me win. And then we have one more drink while the game above is last second, hold-your-breath, one shot, two-points, three, down-to-the-wire. We talk about leaving, about long road trips across the country. Before. When the open spaces of the country were still a mystery. And the open road could stretch on and on and on until finally it came to an end at the edge of the ocean. And anything is possible at the end of the road. America is not the mystery she used to be. She once was. Her corners and conventions have been brought out into the light. Her rolling hills and long prairies and badlands now documented and developed. But we talk about it anyway. Talk about getting away. From here. There’s no need...
When the world becomes water

When the world becomes water

Gogo stands over the oven. She is sweating – the air is warm and humid, even at night. She is cooking when I come through the door, licking her mother’s recipes from the wooden spoon. There’s a loaf of bread and garlic next to her with a piece missing. And she says, “Forgive me. I was so very hungry. You’re late.” “I’m sorry.” “I started eating,” she wipes her hands with a white towel from the rack. “I couldn’t wait.” Only the light over the sink is on, keeping the kitchen in shadows and smells. I take a bowl from the cupboard and she fills it with noodles, tomato, garlic, wine. We sit down at the small wooden table pushed against the wall and eat mostly in silence. We fall asleep on the couch after we’re finished, watching something on TV that we’ve both seen before. The apartment is only one room. Nothing is far away. It was the opposite the last time we had sex. It was the last time we fell asleep together in the bed – slept someplace other than the couch. “You’re early,” she had said, her hair pulled across her forehead, panting, licking her lips, unsatisfied. We watched a movie recently. I don’t remember the title. It was something that Gogo wanted to watch and I fell asleep before it was over. I woke up near the end to a guy with a strong jaw taking the leading lady in his arms and telling her, “You’re silly.” “What?” The heroine asked. “To think that the money that you’ll inherit from your mother is what...