Waiting for the Hurricane

A response to an exercise calling for a short prose poem about a difficult or painful memory.

Luke and I were married for nearly a year, but it was doomed from the start; we’d gotten together for the wrong reasons. We parted gently; our last try at holding it together was his sending me to a home his family had on the Outer Banks so I could think in the enormous off-season quiet there. The quiet broke in a way that it was hard to ignore.

Waiting for the Hurricane

(for Luke)

She’s been at the beach house for a month when she
wakes to whitecaps and a shingled sky, a storm rolling in
from the south. She’s come here alone at that time of year.
She walks up the sand-spit to look for the wild ponies that
share it with her. They’re used to her by now, and to fickle
weather, too, but today they’re skittish, moving inland with
stuttery, sideways steps, tasting the change in the wind with
their mobile lips that have taken illicit carrots from her fingers.
She hikes back and pulls the hurricane shutters, then
calls and asks him which of them he thinks should file.

(2016)

(photo: Wikipedia)

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