The first thing is the sound of silverware. Someone in the kitchen, emptying the dishwasher. I listen for the click-clack sound the dog makes when she paces up and down the hardwood floors. Nothing. No pacing. For the past two days I’ve been feeding her broken off bits from a slice of burnt bacon.
I think I may be on to something.
There’s a dull ache somewhere between my shoulder and my neck. Familiar, but not the same familiar as the sound of forks and spoons being dropped into a plastic drawer organizer.
I smell coffee and turn my head toward the curtains – away from the ache. I want to ride my bike today. I try to squint my way through the slip of space where the two fabric panels meet, to see if it will rain. I don’t even realize I’ve forgotten about the heat and that I haven’t really been outside for two entire days.
Rain would mess up my plans.
I can hear the drawer in the kitchen gently close. It groans just a bit. Then, I listen to the quiet. Three breaths. Four. The back door closes. I wonder if I’m by myself, and if I’ve missed the first kiss of the day.
With L.L. Barkat.