Snippets of stolen conversations that we weave together,
as we wind our way through the crowded boardwalk;
tattered threads woven in a story quilt warming us with
“And then she laughed so hard her spit hit my face,”
floats lazily by on air scented with ocean spray and
tilapia fillets drying in the summer sun.
Must have been hilarious and we can imagine his astonishment and
hurt as he wipes his face. Our smiles widen.
“But I gave him twenty dollars and he simply disappeared,”
offered by the descending clipping of heels upon the faded wooden planks.
What an inexpensive grift that must have been!
Did he take the twenty straight to the bar,
or perhaps he died that very night before he could return her call?
A thousand alternate endings.
“The doctor gave me six months, and that was a year ago!” Small
victory if he only missed it by a few months here or there.
Sadness descends, but we keep on walking, our ears fishing for a more
“…it’s either me or her…but not both!” and we look at each other knowingly
…a snippet stolen from our own story just two weeks earlier.
I am suddenly deaf and no longer amused,
and our hands release
as the cold waves crash into the supportive pilings.