There was a crook in the treeline where leaves willowed into the pond; we spread a gingham tablecloth across the tilted grassblades and sat crosslegged but upright as expectants.
Sunspots deepened; your teeth opened saying one thing but meaning another. I catch hold of your hip to anchor you down, say: here there is only us acres of cloud no one I promise will know who you are.
I can’t see your eyes for the shades; a bird rattles by or else a dragonfly, my open palms show you the map inked on the skinflesh there. The longer we remain the sooner the gloaming, you vulnerable no other witnesses.
This scene might have been fictitious had we brought wicker baskets wedges of cheese those knives used to slice open taboo yellow novels; I’ve fed you some of these as me, in words I cyphered once then lost.
I try to recall the dictum, time, the way I dragged you by the haunches back to root in our gingham earth. There is a brief caesura of leaves caressing the water’s surface, I realize in a lull that I have jumped past a crucial exchange of tutoyers.
And all before day has set the questions you must ask wane quickly, my eyes obscured by night just at the moment you remove your sunglasses: this silence an opening a diagram the way you are you right now winding your watch.
An invigilation scene almost, like I am feeding you histories of me the formality of walls shaping systems of trust even though we are hardly nameable yet—you cried out another’s name last night—to warrant it.
Here there is only us cloud cover now no one will know you are I promise with me. Since we have eschewed all pretense I remind you of my presence by taking your toes into my mouth.
Moonrise quickens your jaw, teeth saying another thing but meaning only one; we move smiling through rooms maps no longer necessary, the palms of my hands against your spine, ushering, ushering you into us.
I remember the mandate for flipping over hourglasses; I pet your broken watch and somehow can predict by it that morning will shatter patterns of behavior that touch will replace.