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The crisp morning light was white across the wall, reflecting then refracting upside-down in the eye but not the mind of the boy on the bed. This light did not spill; it neatly aligned itself parallel to the mass of cotton and springs beneath him lengthwise between the curtains and the squat maple chest-of-drawers. His great, soft body was still beneath the sheets (also white, also crisp) enjoying the benefits of the efforts of particles tirelessly sprinting all night back and forth from skin to sheet, skin to sheet. Glaring at the Republican curtains, he tried to get the squint out of his eyes. His mother had chosen that dark ivy pattern on white poplin that moms always claim is masculine and classy but which really comes across as disingenuous and excitedly cries I CAN’T WAIT UNTIL THIS IS A GUEST ROOM!!! He hated those curtains even more than he hated Heather Kanaska.
He blinked in a wide sweep of white. Every picture he laid eyes upon was fringed in this way; framed by his lashes like angels’ wings closing briefly to bless his cheekbones and kiss the very inside corners of a long and Roman nose. If you got close enough to him to feel the gentle breeze coming off those long, gracious feathers you might be carried away to the brilliant blue shores of his eyes where you could rest your long-tired limbs in the cool, calm waters. Divorcees, PTA moms, successful but achingly childless CEO’s greedily and guiltily lapped at him until their heads were quiet and their limbs stretched out in silent, shivering ecstasy. Those wings ushered into his bed the angriest, most exhausted man-eaters; women who even hated men- hated him for being a man but still loved cock, and the things he could do with his. In the morning they left well thought-out notes for him in neat, ladylike handwriting on softly scented paper all full of concern for him and his well-being but it can’t go on, after all. Not at his age- not at their age, most certainly. They knew he would understand, “Yours in Christ,” Sunday school teacher number two. He collected these in a photograph album, kept like pastel-winged butterflies straining their thin silver veins to tear themselves off their pins. He blinked and was blessed again.


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