by Monica Hall
A chance encounter at Torrance Beach.
Burnout Beach to be precise.
I watched you kicking up sand from a distance.
Must have been those high-top work boots.
Your shirt spilled from your back pocket like a tail.
A Marlboro in one hand, and a plastic tumbler in the other.
I heard the clinking of ice.
“Want some?” you offered.
“What is it?” I asked.
“Candy” you said and smiled.
You asked for my number.
But you never called.
Months later our first date was unremarkable,
But you had more bravado than anyone.
“Who taught you how to kiss?” you asked me.
To this day, I still don’t know what you meant.
We drove in your Chrysler Cordoba.
Motown on the stereo, and I was pleased.
“I like this” you said. “And Jim Morrison”.
“Jim could sing the pants off of any girl”, you stated.
We jumped recklessly into each other’s lives.
Soon we had a family of sons.
You never changed a diaper.
Nor sat and did homework.
But you taught our boys great things.
Like how to steal home plate.
“Anybody can get on base” you would say.
And you showed them the value of hard work.
We fell apart countless times.
But heaven always put us back together.
And like the Isley Brothers sing:
“…but if you leave me a hundred times…
…a hundred times, I’ll take you back”.
And I would.
At the end of my life,
I will have folded your white t-shirts a million times.
And I will die happy.