Air Show

Just wanted to say,
on this fine dull morning,
how yesterday
you sat at a picnic table
grinning at me
from a face
I’d never seen.
And you reached out
and into me
and expelled an obsession
taxiing there for take off.

My ears are open
not full of sand
or pain.
Open to hear the wind
and the rumbling thunder
of a stealth bomber.
I look up
and see a gull gliding
and a kite flying.
And all that sound,
all that noise,
is in my head.

Your kindness flies
like sand over my feet
like music and swaying hips
like laughter on my lips.
And I hear you
and feel you.
The comfort as big as the sky,
as opaque
as this overcast day.

My girlfriend, Jacqueline suffers a terrible break up. We get together often to commiserate and offer each other support.
Labour Day weekend my son, Aidan and I go to the cottage with our relatives. But by Sunday evening we are bored and want to come home to the city. I worry though because Cheryl is still my main support. An entire evening and holiday Monday yawn anxiously before me.
On Monday morning I contact Jacqueline. I tell her I am desperate for something to do. She invites me to the beach where she is playing volleyball. I am not sure if she is asking me to play, but I put on shorts and a t-shirt and walk to the lake.
I arrive at the court before the other players turn up. Jacqueline and Sam are sitting at a picnic bench with a self-help book between them. Sam is friendly and open. I join their conversation about break-ups.
Jacqueline’s cell phone rings and she wanders up the beach to talk. Sam tells me my honesty is profoundly effecting him. He confesses that he trawls the waters on PlentyofFish too and leads on many women. He confides that he seeks out the vulnerable ones, tells them what they want to hear, makes them fall in love, then toys with them like a cat with a beetle.
Sam is a predator, and it takes one to know one. He surmises that the reason Fletcher stopped chatting with me is because he’s moved on to other prey. I believe Sam. He seems to know Fletcher’s motives. Sam has nothing to gain; his candour accelerates my healing.
Sam and Jacqueline are so kind. I am accepted and loved; they take care of me! A new world of people opens up. We play volleyball all day in the sand. I have fun like I haven’t in years. I don’t want it to end – and it doesn’t.

You are reading an excerpt of Chatterbox. How do you like it so far?


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