Clear green water, tulip poplars, sepia photographs, Japan, creeks, metaphors, etymology, hand-lettered signs, holding things in my hands, old things, pocosins, passports, the sound of Portuguese, clean lines, muted colors, pomegranates, Mountain Dew in a can, Mount Olive-brand sour pickles, Havana, country roads, country wisdom, turns of phrase, hot sunshine, Sharpies and Uniballs, gods of the crossroads and protectors of travelers, small groupings of similar things, children on their birthdays, serendipity, ancestors, lists, Polaroid pictures, pedicures, back stories, Sapelo Island, soaking tubs, a hard massage, privet blooming at roadside, sliced ruby-red tomatoes sprinkled with salt, blackberries, wild cherries and hogplums, sensitive singer/songwriters, Orion and the Evening Star, Wikipedia, maps and atlases, nostalgia, New Orleans, slow winks, slow grins, scuppernongs, drawls, the long curve of an inner thigh, the warmth held in the hollow of a neck, a warm palm in the small of my back, the taste of salt on a collarbone, learning, grace.
I was at home, prowling the streets on a limpid blue morning, when out of the corner of my eye, this window. I wheeled around, parked and nosed about. The house was a shotgun, one of hundreds built in East Wilson pre-World War I to house a flood of ex-farmers pouring into town to work in tobacco factories. It had been abandoned as regular housing, but showed signs of fairly recent usage as a shelter for the homeless or perhaps those otherwise wanting to keep their business out of sight. The door had been ripped from an interior room and laid against the empty window frame, which faced the street on the broadside of the house. The door’s cool, lemony yellow was a calming contrast to the gray roughness of the house’s siding. When I went home next, the house was gone.