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Dear A.,

You picked me up from work one day and we went back to my place and drank craft beers on my patio. Yes, I knew you in a former life, in the land of beer garden heat lamps and of course the Bronze Fonz. It was the first global warming day of spring in ’11, and we underestimated the sun from our lawn chairs. You’d ripped every Ani DiFranco album for me; we worshipped “Fire Door” while our skin reddened righteous around the altars of our tank top straps. We’d have burned academia down that day, if we hadn’t run out of beer. To the tiki bar next door, or even just to visit your cats. When I moved home, you sent smoke signals from Wyoming, and I pictured you standing on painted clay mountains in your knit cap and hippie boots. You wanted to be pen pals, but I was busy burning paper with new kinds of pain, overestimating the sun. Today we both have baby boys, little loves that tug us with sticky hands from room to room like doors don’t exist. We both know they do. We both know they don’t matter, can’t stop mother-fire or the mail. You wanted to be pen pals, to practice the dying art of somebody’s got to be interested in how I feel. How not to write you now and at least stir the coals a bit?

xo S


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