It’s in those moments, clearing my sore throat and feeling the scruff of my face against my hands, late at night in my dimly lit dorm room, that I’m drawn into a sort of trance. Back to the days of high adventure, of a romanticized and imagined past contained in a dark parking lot with a single car billowing steam from the hood, and four young men standing round laughing, having torn up the gravel just moments before.
Its in the moment on the dock before I went home with you, and you kissed me on your hard bed in your grandfathers basement, and he died three days later, and I wondered if you ever understood that horrific symbolism. Or if you understood how the blazing taillights of my car at night on their way past Nobska, were like a farewell to the warmth of that summer, embracing all of the things in that small world I loved so dearly.
It was in those moments before it all fell apart, and I fled and reminded myself of the growing power beneath my feet. It was a time of life, and of an infinite and hectic glow that rushed from a high point overlooking the sea, down the winding costal road, past bonfires dug in the sands, toward the rush of life on Cape Cod in the summertime. A time when I felt most myself amidst the cool sea air that blew thick with salt and the essence of July and August.
Laughter in the dark of the green, A bandana tied around your forehead, the way the street seemed alive with an endless handful of months, and an honesty that maybe I just imagined, in that manic dream of that seaside town I swore was real.
I swore under my breath when it was proven outdated. I kicked my desk into the wall and left a hole in the drywall one day I’ll have to explain to you. It’s a different kind of madness, a different kind of wanderlust and fear and paranoia and fright for my life that I’d never felt before, shrinking into dreams of past youth and of the golf course where we loitered and of the sprinklers we dodged and the fires lit and the beer drunk and the cigarettes smoked and your smiles and how in this short happy life I feel I have lived a thousand times over in newly uncovered memories.
Memories uncovered when the mood is right, and the campus sleeps and the cassette deck hisses and I hold my unkept face, and how I haven’t showed, and how I fear for my life as a coward before the whistle and the pulling upward with both arms over the wall. Because in every recess of my life, despite the life lived, I am still in want of the immeasurable years, and of a life both beyond this town, and contained within it. I am in the taillights that wound along the costal road at speed, wishing for understanding in the shadow of the terrible knowledge that comes with age. Knowledge that I am the poorest at ignoring.