Lost: the hot-pink bullet from the spent cartridge of lip gloss he’s found lodged between gearbox and seat. And the beat she always caught, chasing from station to station as they raced between red lights. The scent of summer evaporating at noon—coconut, sweat, the salt lick of her skin scorched against turquoise vinyl. Evening’s perfume of broken heat, a tide of lawn sprinklers whipping through the dark as moons emerge: each neighborhood, each roof, each windowpane sending up its own. In the smaze of foundry chimneys, a tarnished spoon bent by telekinesis into a wedding band. Over a steeple, a halo missing a saint. Above the shimmering sweet-water sea, a tragic mask with a comic reflection. Or is it vice versa? There’s one un-self-conscious about its pitted face; one with its own star in Hollywood; and another aloof, back turned as if boycotting tomorrow, the way that Miles Davis, circa Kind of Blue, would turn his back on the audience when he’d solo. And in the rearview mirror where it’s always October, leaves blowing off like pages from an unfinished memoir …
“So, where to?” he’d ask.
“Baby, just drive.”
Stuart Dybek, Ecstatic Cahoots: Fifty Short Stories, Farrar, Straus and Giroux (June 3, 2014)