I knew you were true so I boiled inside just looking at you.
Content believing anything outside an adulterer was a solid significant other.
Though, while you were here, I was so so sad, finding myself trailing the house like a sleepwalking phantom. Too exhausted to remember not to be found where I ought not. You married a ghost–a ghost that is so fitting for your temperament.
An eclipse of my whole self.
The listlessness an appropriate darker side.
Where you vowed to stay forever and guard it.
A flag on a shifting side of my moon, determined to be in shadow. While the war on earth began.
The trumpet marking the start of carnage was all of humanity showering my sunlight with arrows. A few billion lanses.
I tilted my head forward a few inches to feel heat cloak my face and steam roll down to my collarbones. I inhaled the fiery gas and it burned through my nose hairs and throat. Like something more than water going through me. Looking into the shiny steel pot I saw flesh double over and whine. The meat would be nearly finished soon so a half sprig of thyme would need to be thrown in. Perfect timing!
“Hon, will you hand me the thyme from the cabinet?”
“What would you have done had I not come into the kitchen?
“Please. This morning is sweet. Just pass the thyme. Please…”
She passed it, but not without something to say about it.
“I’m wondering about that shelf you mentioned a few nights ago. The floating bookshelf?” She pauses waiting for me to respond to something that isn’t actually a question. “The one with the marbled plexiglass?”
I loathe that, regardless of being told a million times over, she insists on believing that if she simply inflicts her tones a certain way, she can goad people into answering for things like a guilty child. She intends to make me speak like a toddler on display because I have frustrated her by something as simple as dry herbs.
“Well, all I’m saying is you look like the proper lumberjack. It’d be nice to get some handiwork out of you is all. Not that I don’t enjoy you making organic food for the dog. It’s just…”
This little dance was the most tiring. I didn’t mind the mother-in-law-like nitpicking or the insinuation that me taking a while to build another bookshelf in the house that I built from scratch with our contractor made me less of a man. And of course I cook my dogs food from scratch. He’s a pure breed for goodness sake! But as is the nature of the storm that is my wife, a purposeful drip can be more uncomfortable than water boarding.
But I told her the same thing I told my sister and mom when they asked. “Hon, you are worth every drop of effort.” And it remained true as long as I kept saying it out loud. One day I wouldn’t have to say it at all. That’s my hope. Everyone married over twenty years says it just gets easier after that. We’re six years in and I’m wishing I could time-lapse the next fourteen years. “And you look hot as hell today!”
That seemed to please her and she waltzed out of the kitchen. If it weren’t for the way we level out in bed, I don’t know how long I could’ve kept this up.
“Honey, I’m here for you,” I call after affectionately.
“Well it’s like being here with a ghost!”