by Samantha Fazekas
He toppled over in our little fishing boat,
barely big enough for the both of us.
The water rocked around us,
the endless lake swallowed
his name when I shouted.
He caught his breath and the pinkness
returned to his face, even richer
against the steel-blue lake
and the juniper trees.
I always worried about his health –
so much so that I made sure he was breathing
steadily every night when we fell asleep
in our tents.
A smile flittered across my face when he began to snore,
even though it meant I couldn’t sleep.
His snoring joined
the chorus of croaking frogs, vibrating
flies, and chirping crickets.
The crawfish I had caught drummed its pincers
against the walls of the cooler,
adding a beat to the swooshing lake
that brought on a comfortable slumber.
My eyes twitched as the morning light broke.
I heard him tinkering outside his tent,
making a fire for breakfast.
I unzipped my tent and felt the crisp air
linger on my skin. When I looked at him
bending over the fire pit,
a heaviness in my stomach registered my certainty
that we would never return again.