Just Kids

I’m sure I could write endlessly about nothing. If only I had nothing to say.

We threw the final bags in the back; there was an unintended theme of leather and a palette of beige and brown.  The unlocking twist of a wine bottle lid and the smooth engine igniting occurred simultaneously. We drove into the full moon. The stars shone bright, the rain fell hard. We retracted the sunroof and reclined in the back seats. Red wine stained my white shirt. Rain droplets blessed our faces. The night was young and so were we.

I receded into the music of my imagination.

“It’s 11:11. Make a wish,” she said in her sweet tone. I wished for all the wishes to come true.

He picks the locks of her dreams with her own hairpin.

“Grab your camera”, she called from afar. She was the Queen of the crisp white sand castle. “Here you take it” I called in response. The sand hugged my limbs. She shook her head. I rose reluctantly and placed my poncho on to cover my bare breasts. “Is Jai doing something profound?” I inquired. “He has a habit of doing that.” I ascended the dune, following the shadow of her trail and descended down the other side. There he lay, side-by-side with a Kangaroo. Japanese tourists photographed him from a distance. I raised my camera and became one of them.

I had wondered why I had dreamt that, but then again, why do we dream about anything?

He leaned forward and lit her cigarette. She wore a leather jacket with the USA flag tattooed on the back. Together they gnawed at corncobs, together they stoked the fire. His lungs called out, he coughed. She squatted by his side, observing. Black socks, black Birkenstock's. The fire surrendered, the wood ignited. Smoked dates stuck to their foil nest surrounded by a fortress of red wine glasses.

Stay calm was the message telegraphed from his pale blue eyes.

I sat cross-legged on the dark volcanic rocks. A symphony of frog croaks played out around me. I closed my eyes and was transported. The wind blew her blonde hair. She held a bottle of Shiraz loosely in the palm of her hand. The silhouette of two surfers bobbed on the horizon. The sky was a burnt orange hue. The ferocious wind whipped at my back. A black turtleneck and bikini bottoms would grant me warmth only for so long. The crackling fire would beacon us back. I took her hand. Home was one direction. Yet the wind blew another.

It occurred to me as the morning light flooded the small dining area, that without a doubt we sometimes eclipse our own dreams with reality.

It was quiet yet so very loud with thoughts. The scratch of a match being lit. The clouds came back. A butterfly danced in my right peripheral. “Blue or purple?” she asked. Her fingers glided through my hair, two braids emerged. The sun returned. My book cast a shadow on my notepad. I scrawled the word Euphoria.

Perhaps I should be concerned why I have conversations with inanimate objects.

“I feel like a cigarette,” she said. I handed her the vintage tin collected at Bombay’s thieves market. Hit the road jack and don’t come back no more, she sung. He caught my eyes. American Indian. He wore a national park t-shirt. Who was he? It was an innocent car chase between a silver Mercedes and a black Lexus. We took a left down a dirt road. The sun was fading fast. He was beautiful. His eyes were locked on the road. Mine were locked on his.

The compass was old and rusted but it still worked, connecting the earth and stars. It told me where I was standing and which way was West but not where I was going and nothing of my worth.

They sat, eyes shifting from cards to competitors. Quick sips of wine before slamming the next move down with force. The scented candle intertwined their auras. They rubbed the melted wax into their skin.

We didn’t stay long in Saint Laurent. We went seaside but the turtle reserves were off-limits.

You can’t take it all too seriously I thought. The moment you do you sell your soul to the devil. Three dolphin’s backs breached the ocean surface.

Yesterday’s poets are today’s detectives, limping exhausted into the sunset.

 I turned the coarse pages with my fingertips. The ocean crashed into the shore thunderously in the near distance. A barricade of native bush land divided us. Page 141. She returned from the sea. Her hair was wet. Her hands were cold. They emerged together. They pried the final speaks of sleep from their weary eyes, induced by a night plagued by mosquitoes. They poured coffee. I heard the keys rattle. He left.

The Ghost of a flea, what was William telling me.

I wedged myself out from beneath the weight of pillows, blankets and his sleep-ridden body. The fire still crackled. I’d visit the moon before I gave into sleep. I turned the final page. Good night Patti, it’s been a real pleasure. I gently enchanted him out of the depths of his abyss. Come on Darling, let’s go to sleep.

I salute you, Akutagawa. I salute you, Dazzi. Don’t waste your time on us, they seemed to say, we are only bums. All writers are bums, I murmured. May I be counted among you one day.