When we started you wore a red sweater and construction boots and spat. I sipped my glasses in secret and cut you a love letter. Together we walked the streets alone. We built a house of fabric and raised up bumblebees. You set a fire to the back porch for the thrill of calling the authorities.
We went fishing and brought home our catches, and the beehive sparked and hummed where it hung above the cooking fire.
When we made love you sucked my elbows. I moved only for you.
We went riding beside the water. Afterwards we cleared the sand from the horses’ hoofs with our fingers.
You called me Mama and I called you Bee.
You made glossy portraits of us and hung them on the fabric wall. I sanded smooth the chair you built, wide enough for us both to sit.
When we fought I used your red sweater as a handkerchief.
When you brought me calla lilies in apology, I kept them alive in the bathtub.
When you grew restless I burned down the fabric and didn’t call the authorities.
You cursed the sun here and headed for West. You wore the red sweater. You slammed shut the back door of the moving truck and went around to the driver’s seat. You turned on the engine and rolled down the window and leaned your head out as you fastened your seatbelt. Give me one, you said, and I upheld the old code and kissed you devotionally, one last time. When the truck started moving I ran up to catch; your head was still hanging out. I followed behind until my feet bled. I saw a piece of you in the rearview mirror, a clean elbow, a flash of red.
The sweater whipped into my bloody feet with the force of the toss of your wrist, and the wind made it lap against my ankles.
I sat in the grass. I smelled your red sweater, and held it like it was a child. I caressed its worn corners. I brought it to my mouth and ripped apart its flesh and swallowed it in huge bites.