And I was happy to see his face lift lightly and look soft the next day.

And a new minute brought back the good stuff.

And I will feel good.

And it could all be good.

So pay for the pump. Pay for a pear. Pay for red hair. Pay for teacher, pay for teacher, pay for teacher, and pray in bed. Shit, it's hot outside. I'm sweating underneath my bangs, and I don't imagine the sweat will stop. Not this side of September. I can't begin to imagine how much I must sweat in my sleep. So you mentioned the difference between Lovers and Friends, and I feel as if I've been caught red-handed committing a crime. My guts pour through my teeth through my brain. Guilty as charged. I stammer slowly as I speak to reconcile the differences between the two fictions. So there are Lovers and there are Friends. And there are those who are both Friends and Lovers. The Lucky Ones. And then there's the cat. And somehow it's always about the cat, or the cat's hair, or how I should have emptied the ash tray last night because the cat might have been enticed to eat the spent butts and ashes. But the point is that she's small and makes small messes. The point is that she's been fed and isn't hungry. The point is that she loves us and we can't let her down. I've looked at the love stirring in the narrow slats of her eyes. I don't know about you, but I sure as Hell won't let her down.

The words I used over and over again that night: By the wayside. Confused. Frustrated. Don't care. Trying to be honest. Hidden from me. Never tell me. Trust you. Feeling embarrassed. Independence. Going for a walk.

I retired these the second you rushed out the door.

Even though you came back, this is their resting place.

And I hope The Blonde Boy's not counting, 1-2-3. He's so graceful. He's so quiet. He's not boring. He might still find it cute. The hair over my shoulders and down my back, I mean. Maybe even the tangles. If I'm lucky. I think I'm lucky. And my childlike sense of humor. All the stuff I've got to work with, trying to figure out how to do this, trying to get all the hard work out of the way early.

So, I liked the irrigation ditch. The dried up dead worm. That brick that was thrown back into the garden. The ants on the picnic table. Picking at bug bites. Picking up all the paper that was thrown across the golf course. Not picking favorites. Speaking in metaphors. Saying anything, nowhere near everything. Feeling close to someone. How it's new. How it's unfamiliar. How it's challenging. How it's scary. Rather, how it can be scary. You in your dress clothes. Dressed like an elementary school art teacher. Looking like silhouetted Eros. If I imagine you as my teacher, and myself as a child in school, I know my classmates would tease me. They'd all know I think you're cute. No one teases me anymore, and I'm not a little kid, and you're still unemployed, but I think you're cute anyway. Trying to flatter you. Flirt with you. Clumsily. Daydreaming. Lightheaded, wanting a snow cone. I'll get your snow cone. Hunger, wine, and preferences. Harold. Maude. Diving boards and being stoned. And then there's the drinks we drank. Sweet tea, water, beer, lemonade. My mother, my father, their house, my car. I guess I'll just have water. Whatever's free. None of us have any money. A little goes a long way. $25.00 will get you home. So, Junior Candy Whatever, please. Off the dollar menu. And drawings spilt everywhere, lost art and accidents. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 accidents. So many accidents, and when I finally gave in to the anxious force outside of me, another accident. My poor decisions. But maybe I did need a few minutes to myself. You were right all along. I was just ... What I meant to say was ... I don't know why I ... Um ... Well, I guess these things just happen. I care about you. Of course I care. Now more than ever, and always.

I liked all of it, as usual.

And I should have been listening to you. I wasn't listening. Sometimes I need to be reminded. So, thanks for the reminder. And thanks for turning over and laying your shoulder on me. It felt like a feather mountain. It was like a unicorn in a dream. You must have magic skin. I know you care.

It's like that song. How does it go? Fox in the snow. Girl in the snow. Tell someone all the truth before it kills you. I'm picking on Him. The Coyote. The Blonde Boy. I've forgotten how to be calm all of a sudden. Perhaps a cup of apple sauce to soothe the nerves, and silence the mean hearts of man, of woman, of the brutal human, and finally Fox will curl to sleep. Laughing at sleepy visions, hearing you draw. Scratch-scratch, pen on paper, and the music stops playing, and the light goes out. And in her dreams, she solved a difficult equation and left her desk empty and clean, no evidence of struggle, and she woke up early to find that lovely campfire still and dim, but warm, with little things still burning and bright. Love scout resurrected with other scouts. A pinky swear promise seals the deal. Between them both. That slender, beautiful Coyote. And small, skittish Fox. Two mysterious animals. Outside of the cage, looking in, fearful. Too timid to really growl. No bites, no bruises. Just sensitive spots where the skin is soft and vulnerable. Those spots we go at only when we're rabid, imagining we're backed into a corner. But we're both pretty and free. No walls, no corners. I don't do nets / You don't do traps.

I like your independence. I like you. Teach me, tiger. I learn both fast and slow.

I'm foolish, I'm the Fool, and I don't have a fool-proof plan. I'm a ... dumbhead? So, as I trifle around the cliff ledge, I consider the convenience of amphetamines. They really eat up a man's appetite, I've noticed. But no one who sees me sees a man, so perhaps it's the smell of my own blood that makes my mouth water. I care so much about virgin blood. Protection against all things that corrupt the blood. The ego phallus I sense but do not see as I cover my eyes and ears and hum it all away. Thank heavens I met you. In the morning, your nose and my nose still shimmered with summer sweat and grease, and we both put on open smiles and laughed some, and I hope we're both learning, and I hope we're both forgiven. And now it's time to swear off vampires. The one that's me, and in me, and all over me. Vanquish that sick devil and live on in leather, in a black bandana, on a motorcycle. A hard, warm-blooded rebel. I like you, I like you. Meet me at the candy store?

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