She watches a hummingbird skirr from sagebrush to nectar spout, its wings a frenetic blur, like her thirties, forties, fifties.
Grandpa’s descent was complete. He cowered, in a smock, snagging forks and grasping straws, yawping eternally, “Dey heah to take mah guns!”
“The floor is lava!” the boys cheer, leaping on couches. A single smirk; a spell softly spoken. Child-bearing chairs ooze into the eruption.
The boy’s on my porch. Come to rob me, I know. I’m old, alone. The gun bucks in my hand. Blood spatters the newspapers in his fallen bag.
James gazed at the portrait with a paradox of awe and disgust. It was her exactly, years ago, when she was new and not now. He walked away.
She was gorgeous and philosophical, but we could never be together. She imagined her life in an apartment. I imagined my life in a backpack.