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A Summer Memoir













The summer poke is fading, and all the while I can’t help but feel its presence around me. It’s in the car on the way to work. It’s on her brow as I brush her cheeks. It’s even in the sheets at night as I try to rest. It is this presence that allows me to recall a past of unforgettables—a past only a mother could give.



August was at its peak, the pools were in full swing, and I had a friend. However may brief—it was not a worry to dwell upon. I had just finished the stock at Regario’s Bakery shop on 13th street, and was briskly walking toward the bridge that connected St. Charles and La Tempa. My bike had broken last week on the way home from school, so I had to resort to the old “foot to floor” method. My girlfriend, Denise, had played up the whole town for me since we moved in last Christmas, and I couldn’t wait to be rescued from the summer boredom. I could barely see where I was walking because of the beads of sweat in my eyes, but nonetheless I made it home within a half hour. I snatched the spare key as I reached the apartment door, and collapsed in the cool air inside. I could hear the blow-dryer blaring upstairs, and knew mama was about to leave for work. No matter what the time, job, or place, she always looked as if she had just stepped out of a Vogue cover shoot. She was a real beauty. I grabbed some tea and pushed my way up the stairs.
“Mama,” I began, “I’m going out tonight. It’s Denise’s birthday, and Paul and Shawnee said we’re gonna do something real special for her.”
“Lisa—don’t you think you’ve spent enough of your time with that girl? You now I don’t trust her, and yet you deliberately o ahead with these plans regardless of my opinion.”
“Ok, mama—see you tonight then,” I replied as I strolled o the guest bathroom to get ready.











***
“Oh my god. You are absolutely stunning,” I rolled out, unaware that my eyes had suddenly left the door and had fallen on her mouth.
“Oh hush…why don’t you just wish me a happy birthday?”
I squealed as I grabbed her and pulled her in for a proper welcome. Denise was always beautiful, but I had to hand it to the girl. She could take a pair of jeans, a jersey, and some lipstick, and make you wonder whom she modeled for. The night was early—barely nine o’clock, but all I wanted to do was grab Denise, and lay on the couch for a reviewing of “Casablanca”. She was so cute with her vintage flicks.

Paul and Shawnee had yet to show up—but I wasn’t too worried. Any extra time with my girl was always a good thing. Plus I knew they were out getting the celebration supplies—cake and candles. We sat around and talked for the majority of our empty time, and I could tell it had finally happened. Maybe it was the way she looked—or maybe it was just how she still continued to make my stomach flip. Either way, I knew I was in love with the girl. Around Eleven-thirty we heard a knock on the door. The shades were drawn surrounding the house, so it was difficult to make out who was at the front door. I told to Denise to wait in the backroom in case it was a surprise from the appropriately titled Tweedle Dum Duo. I tried to look out through the side window, but to no avail. So, I opened the door anticipating cheers and balloons. But instead I found something very different.












***
Brickets told
An elder voice
Rings the town
Fueled of fear.
Year by year-
The quest remains
To kill the spiders
And mourn the
Child.











***
“It has come to our attention,” they began, “ that under the circumstances, we feel your relationship has exceeded its propriety.”

My head felt full. The lights were bright in my face, and I could feel a cold, soft hand next to mine. It was Denise—red faced and exhausted. In front of me sat my mother, Paul, Shawnee, and my Sunday school teacher.

“How could you…what…what’s going on?” I heard Denise whimper.

“We feel that under the pressure you’ve been experiencing at a new school, you’ve let yourself be susceptible to the damnations of another girl. We understand this is pressure—and because of our great understanding we’ve decided to let you choose. Sine you are eighteen, you may either stay with your mother or leave her side for Denise. We’re sure you’ll make the right choice.”











***

Five years have past, and I am now twenty-three. The days have wilted away quietly, yet with a certain longing to their presence. Every sunrise brings a new hope—and settles each night in a vanishing cloud with the sunset. Distempered and lethargic, I sit down once again to write to you. It is yet again August. And I feel the unforgettables bearing up against my soul. I turn on the radio, and open a window. The pages flourish with words, for I am constantly reminded of your face. I seal the letter and give it to her to mail with the others. She brushes my cheek, and I can feel the sweat on her brow as my eyes close like a passing memoir.





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