“It’s the difference between anthracite and lignite,”
he said with a sort of all-knowing smirk.
“Quite the contrary,” she snapped back
“It’s the difference between pahoehoe and aa.”
He clearly wasn’t pleased,” those examples are
like night and day, and you’re in the dark.”
“You can’t begin to tell between makai
and mauka, but I love you despite it all.”
“And I you, so what if you couldn’t hope
to distinguish between a fastball and a knuckler.”
“You’re really going to hang a curveball like that?
Even a girl like me will take that one downtown.”
He laughs, “that’s why we’re so good together
we agree on so very little most of the time.”
She giggles, “I can’t believe you said that
on that one narrow point I must agree.”
It is like emotions are something
you wear on your sleeve, he said,
picking at threads of sadness, trying
to pry them from the fabric
of the moment, never understanding
they were the warp of his existence,
joy and laughter, compassion
and empathy the weft.
She said, that is only
an illusion, and you know
that illusions are not real.
She held his hand, smoothed
the fabric, tucking away
the odd thread, hoping that he
wouldn’t pull at the selvage
and be forced to watch the
happiness of their relationship
unravel before her eyes.
He slides into the bed after she is long asleep. It is a well rehearsed dance, and she senses his presence deep within her dreams. He leans into his wife, traces his finger tip down from her temple, along the line of her jaw, into the hollow of her neck. In this dream she has grown younger, more beautiful, as he has bent under the weight of time. In this dream, she dances around him, her feet never touching the floor into which he slowly sinks. As the birds begin their morning symphony, she wakes and slips silently from the bed, her gaze lingering on his slightly graying beard. She kisses him lightly on his cheek, and in his fading dream he reaches the cragged peak of the mountain. He smells the scent of pine, then the faint lavender of her pillow, as she steps into the shower and he eases into morning.