The horizon dissipated into fog, the way an Etch-a-Sketch loses its marks with just a simple shake: the island was there, then gone. Then the ocean was gone. Then the trees fuzzed in and out of clarity like uncertain ghosts. And then rain: thick braids of it rolling in the street. When it stopped, we’d found the lava fields where the red stain of lavablood had long been dried. In the tide pools, crabs assessed us guardedly. They were wise to be so cautious. When the mountain goats appeared on the path, they pretended we weren’t there. In another context, a workshop participant would claim this metaphor was too heavy handed to come at the end of the tale.
The ocean in my mouth is a salty, salty pretzel. I fell into the wave and you laughed, then fell under yourself. The ocean’s essentially an equalizer that way. On a nearby island, rain fell in a billow of sheer curtain. A three-legged dog chased a stick on the beach while we swam, then skipped into the surf. The sun overhead dimmed for a romantic dinner somewhere; we were not invited. Our feet disappeared into slippers of sand. We wore them like dance shoes. We wore them like fins.