Her boots were scuffed at the heels, as if she’d been dragging herself against the pavement. She wore a lime green sweater and a burnt orange shawl. I was always proud of her muscles, the hardness resting just under her skin. The softness of her short hair, the way she brushed it over my body. The blue vein darkened her temple, snaked around when she cried. There was always that moment, when I feared she would break, and die in bliss beneath me, as if I had that kind of power.
It’s a light rain, barely wet enough to bother a coat.
The way I would stare at her thumbs when she lifted coffee to her lips.
Outside, the green leaves blow. It shouldn’t be this cold in May.
Walking beside her was never easy. Her stride was twice the length of mine. A warm blanket was all the protection we needed.
My house is so quiet. Pork chops simmer in the crockpot all day.
Mary Lynn Reed‘s fiction has appeared in Mississippi Review, Colorado Review, The MacGuffin, Litro Magazine, Smokelong Quarterly, and Wigleaf, among other places. She has an MFA in Creative Writing from The University of Maryland, and she is co-Editor of MoonPark Review.
–Art by Piotr Kaczmarek