K.S. ANTHONY: Spring

29 May 2019


Pink flowers bloom on the spindly, gray branches of the cherry trees while their oak and elm counterparts still stand bare, except for moss and pale lichen, ancient and fractured against the white sky.

The roses have not started to bud, but amidst the thorny stems, garnet-edged green and copper leaves thicken. Roses will come next -- First Nights, Empresses, American Beauties, others in butter yellows and chocolate reds -- and the small garden will be lit with honeybees.

The lawns are marbled with soft, diaphanous, blue shadows and between the shaded cracks, the grass is wet with sunlight, sparkling in the warmth of the afternoon as though it were freshly dewed.

These are days when I've sat under cool pines, kissing sun-warm skin as she stared out at the sea, the wind in her hair, a slight smile tracing her lips, her quartz expression impenetrable. There was the muted thunder of the waves, the cool sand beneath us, the glass shorebreak rushing to meet our bare feet.

Where did she go? 

These are days when I have watched her lying on the hot plastic ribbons of a long deck chair, reaching for a bottle of water and perfumed with damp cotton, chlorine, and sunblock. I liked the way that the ice-blue pool looked with pillows of white light dancing across its walls and the way she bit her bottom lip when she looked at me. We would fold ourselves into the cool, rumpled sheets of whatever hotel room we were in, our bags half-unpacked on the floor beside the desk, next to the sliding glass door to the balcony overlooking the beach or the clubhouse.

What was her name?

These dreams slip into summer, then fall, and then winter and then away. She is always a shadow stretching into another room when the hours have turned us towards other places; other names.

Across the lawn, a girl sits by herself on an unshadowed blanket. She wears a blue dress and uncoils a sweater across her lap. She stretches out languorously, giving her blushing arms to the sun and brushing gilt hair from her face. The breeze smells like honeysuckle and dust; like magnolias and sweetgrass, and it unfolds amidst the song of footsteps clicking against the sidewalks, opening the gates of spring.

(Written 2010)