• Vol. 09
  • Chapter 04
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before i swam

before i swam in seas of butterflies & drank from plastic cups of lime green bubble tea, all while focusing on the upper limits of the sky (from dawn to dusk to dawn) & hoping to see images of limbs & laughter locked, times two, dressed in suede-trimmed sweaters & elbow-patched wools, dancing to/of/on easy streets, under boardwalks, & beyond choppy seas, i was of the understanding that love (& life) - the type of extra scoops of butter pecan, extra batches of snickerdoodles, & extra kisses of blueberry puckered lips on knotted heads - would last forever. slurp. before i swam in seas of strongly salted tears & drank from bowls of weakly flavored bouillon, i was an uninformed girl dressed in a regular uniform. undersized denim overalls with oversized brass buckles. belt button loops & games of never-ending hoops. he’d shoot. swish.  i’d retrieve. on replay. always of the moment. instantaneous connections. converse on concrete. all laces tied. until fabric frayed & knots (of head & hand) loosened. jerseys soiled. limbs slowed. swift turned sluggish play turned solitary. solo. card games of fish replaced games of horse. ultimately, i’d play solitaire at bedsides as i’d hope for an ace & watch my butterfly retreat into a cocoon. silent. lifecycles & cycles of life always curious. before i swam in night skies of aerial courtships & drank wishes upon shooting stars of white light & cosmic wings, i believed butterflies emerged from cocoons. & that courtships were of sand & soil. both marked & mingled. until forced to lift a small corner of a heavy oak all while carrying myself. snap.