First summer, in a beautiful, simple place.
Balmy and gentle, scalding and hot.
An ocean sprawls away before the shack like a mirror.
Shade and intimacy are found under mad, twisted Allspices.
Days are long. Nights are cool and fragrant. A place he
dreams about. The breeze stings his lips
raw with salt. The days do pass; mildly by.

He sits, sprawled like the sea, along a garden.
Head in crushed cymbidiums, moths fluttering
in wild bushes, a mossy fountain gurgles through blotted
openings within the orchard’s heart. The worn statue
of Venus leans suggestively at its center. Water
trickles from her chest and his temple throbs.
It’s the good kind. Skin feels scraped raw.
Dawn breaks over the horizon.
She emerges from the cool cove like a lizard,

blinking slowly in the sun, barely modest-
tangled hair covers the rest. Eyeing, seeing
the shape of him under the trellis. The mess of his hair.
There is a rustle of fabric. Like a flash, she scurries.
He follows her to the ocean. The air is sweet and delicate
as the sun rises slowly, having much more skin to burn.
The day is ripe, a picked peach. It will be long.




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