I was lonely so I took another, but the other
was lonelier, one of a generation
taught to pleasure themselves instead,
left behind by father and husband
and mother, leaving holes and hills
for cities and places to start again,
the sides of the world where they called
from stones, plains, and trains,
the sun never setting in their screens,
and when she finally came she looked
out into a windowpane of empty
space and she gathered her dead and
her country floated into place.
Dear ghost, dear monster,
I am happiest when you are here
Fixated in my hotel bed, the only thing
Permanent at this time. It was the second
Thing I was scared of as a child,
To ever see a ghost. In my mind it was always a man
Parted from a woman he loved.
The first thing I was scared of was to die.
As we drive into the country in her electric car, we look into the sky, so dark and starless, and silent. Perhaps to fill the silence she starts speaking about her habit of picking up rocks by the cold, random streams in the woods.
There are all kinds of granite, she teaches us. With all sorts of names like Volga Blue and Black Pearl. Her nine-year old daughter takes a hammer and she splits the rock, and there’s a field of bright crystals in my mind.
Angelo Lacuesta is a Nonfiction Editor at Panorama