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He drove us so far from town the street lamps changed from brilliant phosphorus to incandescent bulbs skirted by crinkled reflectors. Darkness gobbled the stars...
He filled the doorway, surveyed the mess we’d made: upended mattress, clothes cast upon curtain rods, my hand poised to throw a pillow at Gene. Let’s go for a ride, was all he said and turned away. I wondered if Gene thought the same as I did. He’ll drive us somewhere far away like a litter of kittens and drop us off. He drove us so far from town The street lamps changed from brilliant phosphorus To incandescent bulbs skirted by crinkled reflectors. Darkness gobbled the stars until he stopped the car. Hard blackness crystalized pinpoint lights that outlined the smelter in a dot-to-dot picture. Something crept toward us, high on the hill, rumbled above us, hissing, a monster coming to eat small children. Suddenly, stars tumbled from its belly. Glowing galaxies bounced down the hillside. Carloads of golden starlight melted from scarlet to sapphire dissolved into clinker dust that in daylight glowers in a heap of slag. Some time later, I smelled the warm scent of his collar as he carried me from the car to the cool summer sheets of my bed.
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You can read more from Sue Cauhape on her page, “Ring Around the Basin”: