Sheets boiled with lavender, the hard bed. Handmade eye pillow filled with Great Northerns. Cactus to the ceiling, orange corsages. No embarrassment, a calm that is the opposite of ambition, I think. Mind like a diary unlocked on the dresser, pages lifting in breeze. Like those vivid flowers. Amethyst on a chain: external heart. Heirlooms in a shallow basket I can look at without regret, or regard and weep, kneeling, beside. A water glass, my eyeglasses, arms open in a waiting embrace. Sleeping on my husband's chest, his undershirt dryer-warm, arresting as a cloud in a black-and-white photograph.
From The Children by Paula Bohince. Copyright © 2012 by Paula Bohince. Reprinted with permission of Sarabande Books, Inc. All rights reserved.