A cigarette butt, and a small piece of tin can with blood on the cutting edge. A treehouse only big enough for one, where two make love. A fire, started with overconfident expertise, burning brightly while children smoke and drink like expats. A secret handshake.
A hot-boxed sunroom in a vacationing neighbour’s house. A flock of grade nines and tens sprawled drunk and stoned on the carpet. The 1998 Rob Zombie single “Dragula”. A police officer who responds to the scene.
A small purple purse full of quarter horses that pay for a cab to the city. A moon as big and bright as foreground skyscrapers. A rooftop campsite, with traps made of string and shingles. A pocket knife. A sweater: a tandem sleeping bag. A tattoo that says, “always … forever,” which stings and has not healed.
A wallet on a chain, dangling from oversized jeans. A Canadian Forces Parktown bush hat. A cigarette tucked behind an ear—an ear where a perfect curl of sandy blonde hair cups the lobe. A long, jagged scar winding from palm to elbow crease.
A brick, a nail, a promise.
A fracture. A tattoo made-over.
A phone call years later. A bond, a string, a tether, a tear. An unbroken line. A knife to the heart. A "seat at the right hand of God."