I hadn’t quite grown up,
not immaturity exactly, although there was some
more the lightness of an early 20’s
or perhaps the absence of density
no weight of mortgage or career
teenage-ness could still be felt
those needs –
to be centre,
and thought to be doing – it.
I got to know her over the summer,
had done some odd jobs … was more than acquaintance –
somewhere between hired help and friend.
but could turn employer quickly. Damn quickly.
She was surprised when he called in,
especially the second time.
They had been lovers, a couple, an item,
for several years – a decade and more ago.
– “ 12 or 13 years at least. ”
He was a long way from home – on business …
wondered if she was in …. and dropped by .. just on chance
…. ditto for the return journey.
I was there both times
both times she was very different with me –
tugging the waistband of my jeans
ruffling my hair
expressing mock outrage at minor profanity and
delivering a playful slap to my butt ….
letting him think ….. she and I …. might just be …
The second time we had drinks
on the deck
becoming Pacific Ocean …. becoming horizon.
amid the slosh of gin, clink of glasses and clatter of plates
the tiring sun backlit wist, acceptance, regret – what if – plural
and generosity – single – from him to me.
He seemed pleased –
pleased I might be filling her need.