Discoveries of a Future With You, My Love


by Sarah Marquez


My hands reaching towards you–

the first small gesture I make.

 

We are standing by your truck,

meeting for the fifth time.

 

How long you waited for this

doesn’t matter to the red-hot day,

 

temperature climbing,

or the fruit beetle, searching

 

for a good place to land and rest

tired wings. All the old ways

 

did us no good. Taking it slow,

repeating we’re just friends,

 

in each other’s ears, keeping

from everyone the secret

 

that we’ve kissed,

in a way that turns you on

 

and gives me butterflies.

On the thirty-minute drive

 

to your house, I see the future

two months from now: ash falling

 

from September sky, acres and acres

of wild brush burning

 

along the San Gabriel Mountains,

no relief coming except you

 

alone, in the water truck.

I am stuck at home, standing

 

in a dream, learning the distance

between us is a tangle of red flames

 

on the incidents map,

open on my phone screen.

 

I am not ready to inherit

this discovery of parting,

 

like the promise I made

under flashing stars,

 

to breathe in deep,

the smoke rolling away

 

from the skin of your hands,

reaching back.


Sarah Marquez (she/her) is an MFA student at Lindenwood University. She is based in Los Angeles and has work published and forthcoming in various magazines and journals, including Human/Kind Press, Kissing Dynamite, Salamander, The Hellebore, The New Southern Fugitives and Twist in Time Magazine. When not writing, she can be found reading for Random Sample Review, sipping coffee, or tweeting @Sarahmarissa338.