'This Isn't as Much Fun as I Thought It Would Be' by Mary Lynn Reed


She sat outside the market, on a stack of soda cases priced two for nine dollars. She smoked the last cigarette in the pack and watched the tourists fill up their tanks, dump their fast food bags in the bin between the pumps.

The wind shook the house, day and night. He wanted to touch her but she looked so determined, with her notebook and pen at the dining room table. He lit incense and put on a pot of coffee.

Half the time, I don't know who I am. Peering through the store front, I see another life appear, with a cash register, display cases, and a different kind of tired. We drive to the lake, park under a tree; it starts to rain. 

Under the mattress was a scrapbook filled with old pictures. In the window, a chime that sang in the breeze. He was lonely, that was plain to see.

She lay on the bed, spread diagonally as if there were no one around for miles. There was a dampness in the air that clung to everything. How much is too much, she wondered.

He sat in the coffee shop, in the back, with a wrinkled newspaper and a half-gnawed bagel. 

I don't know why I started this, imagining. 

She wrapped a quilt around her shoulders, searched the dark night for a sliver of moon but found only sky.

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