By the time the fisherman returns.

By the time the fisherman returns I will have forgotten the six-letter word that makes my head feel heavy.

I will have grown my hair, and remembered the way that wet morning grass feels on my feet; or wet evening grass, as a fire crackles nearby.

By the time the heat bugs buzz in the afternoons, I will have stayed in the lake until sun-down,
until I know that the cool water is warmer than the air, until I use it like a blanket, until my lips have turned just a little bit blue.

My hands will have slipped on a mossy ladder.

I will have sneezed at dust dancing in sunbeams through barn windows.

By the time the season changes, I will have stopped looking over my shoulder.

My freckles will show.

I won’t be so aware of my teeth, attached to my jaw, attached to my neck, and the pressure that they carry.

I will stop feeling hungry.

By the time the sun hangs low at four, the scars will stop being scars and start being triumphant remnants of battles fought, battles lost and battles won.

I don’t knows will become pleasant surprises.

When the fisherman returns, I will be gone.

 

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