Do you remember Thursdays?
I remember Thursdays, especially the hot ones. I remember
sitting on the back porch and waiting for mom to come home,
running my tongue over lemon Popsicles that trickled
like waterfalls down my arms, laughing with you and wanting
to walk around the garden but being too lazy
to get up. I remember looking out across the yard,
at the gravel path winding between thriving flower beds
and vegetable patches, at the poinsettia that bloomed
against the white wall, looking comically out of place
in a desert garden. I remember thinking
it was too peaceful a scene to disturb, anyway.
Yesterday was Thursday.
When I stepped out into the backyard, I wondered
when we’d stopped watering the grass, when the once
lively garden had become such a wasteland, like the aftermath
of a bomb. It couldn’t have lasted long, I thought,
not in this kind of heat, not without love,
without tender hands to care for it. And I wondered,
as I walked around the garden, kicking off the browned heads
of the dying primroses that creeped into the path,
I wondered when the poinsettia, the only thing
still alive, had started looking like a gunshot wound
against the white wall.