Wednesday, August 02, 2006

heat index:114

Okay, okay. I have lived through this before, though I don’t remember. What I remember: trees and hills. Red clay. A fire. My father along with the neighborhood dads went and destroyed an ant hill, dousing it with gas. Rollerskating in December. A neighbor girl had blue skies and white clouds painted on her ceiling. A neighbor girl collected balloons. Shorts and tank tops. Short hair my mother cut herself. Sitting on a kitchen stool and letting her do it, knowing, even at six, she was cutting it crooked. Bugs. Giant bugs. Lizards my mother swept out of the kitchen. Flies that gathered in babies’ eyes; they wanted the sweat. We went to the pool. Books at the pool. Hot dogs at the pool. Slides at the playground at the pool. Orange clay in the earth. It dried into horses. A diamond ring in the deep end, I dove for, then turned it in. An accent that didn’t stick. Blonde and brown; my skin turning golden, instantly like bread. It is leftover skin, inherited from a vague history. What I will remember: carrying my bag. Shoulder welts. Half-dried hair. The library guard yells at a girl, says: Put your feet down and put on your shoes. Air conditioner coughs. It is one hundred and five degrees.