Into The Future

He woke up to see her yellow hair for a second before the door closed. She had gone without a sound, without a word. He lay at peace, feeling the sense of her in his hands and pressed against his chest. When he breathed, he was breathing her.

Gone. For a year.

He hadn’t tried to talk her out of it. He knew she must go and do what she had to do. She wanted to do it alone and he loved her for that. Her light brown eyes had smiled with a small fire when she knew he wouldn’t protest, wouldn’t argue.

He turned and looked at the slight imprint her body had made upon the bed and thought of the warmth of her there. The rising sun pointed a gold finger through the window and touched his forehead. He smiled, then stood up and stepped to the window and swung it open. A fresh light breeze blew in from the blossoming almond trees; sparrows chirped here and there, and high atop a telephone pole a mockingbird danced and began singing its hundred-and-one songs. “So”, he thought, “this is the first morning. Just three hundred and sixty-four more. It’s not so long. I can do it; and so can she.” He went to the kitchen, grabbed a carton of eggs from the fridge, turned on a gas burner, and cracked a decisive egg on the edge of the frying pan.

The sleek-winged jet plane carried her up over the green and brown checkerboard plains. She thought of him then, as she had left him, so peacefully sleeping. When she went back—–she pictured his dark eyes looking intently, yet easily, at her, and the hard curve of his mouth. She wasn’t really going away; she was just taking a long-cut to him. How great it was to be so fully understood.

As the plane made a slight turn the sun flashed on a wing for a second like a wink or a kiss leading the way. She smiled and thought that it was wonderful to be so cleanly flying away from him and flying toward him at the same time. “I’m in the future, and I am the present, and all that I will do is now beginning”.

She pressed her fingers against the window beside her, as if to make a move. But she was the piece moving, conquering space and time, just as certainly as the men below had conquered and given purpose and beauty to the flowing earth. Then she pictured him moving forward too, the glad, sparkling sweat running down his temples, that stern, inflexible half-smile of his, ready to laugh or to give commands, and his hands—his black and grimy hands. She thought, “Already less than a year,” then whispered, “I am coming, my Love, I am coming.”

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