Reading - Writer Sam Spieller
Good Times for People to Say They Are Getting a Divorce
For example when Maine still buzzes
and the loons hide from the kayaks during the day
Kent finds the deer jaw puts it in a bag to bleach later
and James tired not trusting of the lake turns back early
He grew up in the city remember
When Crystal and James say they’re going to swim
at night and Kent looks up and outside and it’s windy
he laughs goes back to his book
Crystal comes in wailing arms up everywhere Kent thinks it’s a joke
she says James is drowning grabs life jacket
Outside the dock pitching falling while James on his stomach
retches the water he swallowed back into the lake
Kent just standing stripped down to boxer briefs heaving
slips James back into the black
carries his dead weight to shore to blankets to bathroom
sleeping two hours before shuffling in
to the kitchen for a game of carrom with everybody
When the pines the fire pit the bluegill
the screen door all tug at the half-empty pale ale
in your hand breathing listen
but no one is saying anything
The downstairs guest bedroom is hungry.
At first we tried furnishing it.
When we first moved in,
we hung French wine posters on the walls,
sat a rocking chair by the window,
installed a queen bed to dominate the floor.
The next day the room was empty.
We looked at each other, puzzled.
We put some empty bottles
where the bed should have been
and closed the door.
An hour later,
after a couple of reruns of Sitcom! Sitcom!,
the bottles were missing
and the carpet showed no evidence
that they had been there at all.
We locked the door.
A week passed.
The bedroom groaned
and rumbled with discontent.
We piled our trash and mismatched socks
in the center of the room.
In a few hours,
the room was devoid of everything
but the Berber and bare walls.
“We could put the kids in there,” I said.
“Your parents are coming up next week,” she said.
“We could feed them to the room, too.”
We laughed and looked at the carpet.