They wanted him to stop kicking like that— it made their eyes corkscrew, drilled the sun in the sky so light dumped out like blood from a leak. The boy in the trunk wouldn't die. They drove and drove, and he dented the trunk's tight lid, called their names, then pounded the wheel wells with a tire iron. The sun filled their skulls so they felt like hell and the boy in the trunk wouldn't listen. You'd think it was burning hot in there, you'd think he'd be gone, passive, but no. The boy in the trunk banged on and on until the noise grew godalmighty unforgivable and they had no choice but to pull into the woods, leave the car, try to hitch a ride with someone quieter, someone who could listen without interrupting. They'd had a hot day. The road simmered to the overheated sky. But from far away they still heard him, the boy in the trunk, his empty cry.
I love the crown molding and the white granite countertops. And look, dear! Stainless steel appliances! Don’t you love them? It’s such a perfect apartment, and, in every room, a coffered ceiling. And don’t you love the pink twin sinks, like porcelain scallops? And listen to the faucets, like the rush of a waterfall heard through thick woods just as the birds began to sing early one morning years ago in the hills outside Florence. Where are you going? Love fills me the way the sun surprises the room when I pull the string and the curtains open. Pinch-pleat curtains, crinkle-voile, semi-opaque, and sheer! Soft as love when I stroke them, warm as love against my cheek, a scent of spring rain gentling the petunias when I wrap myself in them until I cannot see, until I cannot move my arms or legs. Of course, I’d love to see the guest bedroom with its walk-in closet and built-in shoe shelf, its en suite bath with the whirlpool tub! Let me just wipe my eyes on these curtains. Let me just untangle. The view through this window is so lovely, the far fingers of smoke trembling over the distant city where the workers— rich black thoughts pour from the smokestacks is all I have to say about the workers. No, sorry, I’m still here, wrapped in the curtains. They were so alluring, voluptuous, really, if curtains can be voluptuous against bare skin. You continue with the tour, dear, and I’ll be along presently. The sky is rose chiffon, the clouds like pressed flowers above the smokestacks, just leave me here, restrained and lavished at once! And the window, with its inviting coolness to the tongue. To my tongue. It’s like I am licking those smokestacks!