& to the flickering

I remember having her around everyday and the availability of her voice in the middle of the night. I remember the smell of salt and the weight of cold sheets on my bed. I remember the summer and slowly screaming words through the wind with my friends (& we’re broken, still it’s all that I want to do). I remember the old house and skipping school to lay in bed and take photographs of my life with sidewalk chalk. I remember crying on that bloody shoulder. I remember when the table had four chairs. I remember trying to fit eleven people on a stolen couch in an old stolen car. I remember when life was crowded and hot but simple and bright and everything echoed and no one minded and it was fun to take shortcuts through fountains in the middle of a city. I remember run on sentences and perfect punctuation. I remember unevenly spread cream cheese at midnight with my best friend. I remember when we loved just for the sake of loving. I remember playing baseball with my dad on Tuesday nights. I remember the blurry boy who moved to Florida and ate cantaloupe in my tree house. I remember getting lost in a blizzard on Valentine’s day with my best friend’s crush, having nothing better to do than get out of the car and make snow angels. I remember having someone I love nearby and the opportunity to call her and tell her I’m on my way over in the middle of the night. I remember getting kissed because of the moon. I remember kissing back because of the stars. I remember strands of wet hair clinging to sun burnt cheeks. I remember sitting in my first love’s garage and feeling beautiful for the first time in my entire life. I remember licking the walls because we thought they tasted like candy. I remember walking barefoot in my brother’s truck and hating him for weeks because a fishing hook got stuck under my toenail. I remember coming home from detention and finding a note from my mom telling me she was leaving. I remember making everyone call me LENA because that’s what I wanted to be called. I remember singing “Under The Sea” with my best friend and jumping on our twin beds for hours. I remember a girl asking me to love her a little bit longer. I remember smiling casually and blinking once. I remember the feeling of dried Elmer’s glue being peeled off of small elementary hands. I remember the smell of walnuts on my grandpa’s workbench and running my fingers through boxes and boxes of useless bolts and nails. I remember the day I stopped trusting. I remember the itchy feeling around my face after jumping into a pile of leaves. I remember swastikas in the backyard. I remember snowflakes on my lips. I remember the smell of my dad’s cigars. I remember the tone of my mother’s voice. I remember getting lost in Kmart and sitting down to cry in the picture frame aisle. I remember getting a crush on one boy because I drew a picture of the moon and he told me I could draw moons for the rest of my life, but he thought I would be happier drawing suns. I remember breathing on glass and learning to write backwards. I remember my mother spilling chicken noodle soup on her lap and the first time I ever saw her cry. I remember driving through the south in the backseat with my cousin and chasing UFO’s to keep us awake, using the head rests as machine guns. I remember being carried through backyards by my crush because he thought I broke my ankle. I remember broken coffee cups. I remember crawling through the sewer with my best friend all the way to East McMurray. I remember laughing when my dad told me he was leaving. I remember pink undershirts. I remember white T shirts. I remember birds. I remember warm water. I remember dry tears. I remember itchy noses. I remember small bags. I remember smiles. I remember funnel cake. I remember tumbling. I remember clarity.

i dont remember my real parent’s faces or my first kiss.

& to the flickering

mara sudol

Utica, United States

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  • Amanda Cole
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