Saturday 15 June 2019

'Snow Angels' by Hannah Storm

Let’s say we made love for the first time in your den, downstairs from where your Mom was baking in her Martha Stewart kitchen. The sweet smell of her cookies would wrap us in a blanket so warm it wouldn’t matter that your Dodge Shadow would get snowed in that night and that we’d have to miss school the next day. 

You would turn up the music and the lines of that Garth Brooks’ song would inscribe themselves in my mind the way you scratched our initials into your bed’s wooden frame.

We would we stay looped together in lyrics and lust, only unfastening ourselves when we heard your Mom’s footsteps on the stairs.

Then we would scramble for our high school debating shirts, throwing them on backwards. Your Mom would knock to say she was leaving the milk and the cookies outside, like she wished we were seven but secretly knew we were seventeen.  She would scarcely be on the stairs before you would fling open the door to the familiar smell of your childhood, which was foreign to me yet made me feel I had come home. You would follow her faltering footsteps with a furtive thanks thrown into the shadows and turn to tell me, ‘You’re like the daughter she never had’. By then your Mom would be on the back deck searching the sky for the one star she hunted for every night.

We would snuggle into your bed again, toes touching, limbs entwined like the tree branches that brushed the snow from the window.

Only later would our fingers feel for the last cookie crumbs and our lips linger on the edge of kisses stained with milk.

When we’d wake from these delicious dreams, it would be to creep into the kitchen, where we would cram more cookies into our bodies, like animals preparing to hibernate. We’d tiptoe past my memory of your Mom asleep in her recliner, your grandma’s patchwork quilt pulled around her neck.

 ‘Is that you’, she’d murmur, her head tilted to the stars. ‘Hello Ma’, you’d say, your chin following the line her’s took.

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