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running away with the circus (looking for dolphins)

There are three of them, a brazen woman with bright eyes and a big voice, a man going grey with a hop in his step and a younger woman who might be their daughter or their niece that twists her short hair into little tufts. They roam the hotel, sometimes in elaborate costumes, letting us know that there will be a secret dance party near the ballroom in an hour.

The older woman strolls in during dinner in a costume of blinking Christmas lights and exotic face paint. V stares up at her, convinced she is a princess or a fairy or maybe both. The next night, she is all in black, great horns wobbling on her head. She always has a pair of black Converse high tops on, as if they go with every costume or maybe they are the only shoes she owns.

The man is typically dressed as a pirate, in a striped shirt, maybe an eye patch. He is perfectly relaxed, like his limbs are made of silly straws. The younger woman is always smiling, her mouth a wall of metal braces and lip gloss. I imagine they sleep …

in-between (there is no name)


The streetlights blink off, and we cross the road in darkness. Our breath hangs in the air. There is a tent of trees going yellow and brown, a wet path, a certain silence reserved for making our way in a dark like this. 

This is the moment, when dawn has not come and the night is surrendering. We are in-between. 

Our steps make soft noises as we weave around the biggest puddles. Old women suck on cigarettes. Young men stick their chins in the air, putting their hands in the pockets of thin coats. A dog pulls hard on its leash. E looks up at me, her face glowing in the dark air. She knows I must go away soon, for some days. This is the last morning we will walk to school together for a little while. 



Later she will jump on the bed and sing some Ramones at the top of her lungs. She will cry for a while in my arms. We will pack a bag with her toothbrush, a comb, her school clothes. I will tuck a fresh empty journal in them, with a message from me on the front page. 

She will ask me later what it says, as no one can read my handwriting. I told her to write it all down, everything she feels when I am away. I tell her it will make her feel better. I promise this. 

"Just like your Monday stories?" She asks me.
"Exactly." I say.

On the plane, I keep thinking of that moment when the streetlights go off, that in-between feeling. Not here, and not there. Not night, not dawn. It has no name.


Comments

Mely said…
Have a safe trip.

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