In June, I’m teenagery and brand new.
A little wild.
I want to immerse myself in salt water.
I want to walk in sand.
I want to stay up all night reading Oliver, Plath, Jong, let the words flow over me as if it’s the first time.
I want to cruise in Sue’s Camero like we did in high school.
Crank up Prince.
He was Prince then, not the Artist Formally Known As Prince.
Sue and I cruised downtown as soon as green simmered, Lake Superior thawed into diamonds, & boys exposed colorful tattoos.
Us with our sooty Madonna eyes and big fat Aqua Net sprayed hair.
Us with our Marlboro cigarettes dangling from our red lips like Marlene Dietrich.
We’d apply our makeup at Sue’s house on Hutchinson. We’d stand at one mirror lining, smoothing, glossing, smudging, bumping into one another.
In those days, less was not more and more was never enough.
“Give me that liner,” Sue said. And she lit a match under the pencil until drops of beads fell like black oil. “Madonna would be proud,” she giggled.
Sue was the pretty one.
Sculpted like a slender slice of white chocolate.
I hated the bitch until I realized she had no idea how striking she was.
I often wondered; wouldn’t one know if one resembled a super model?
I recall one of our downtown excursions.
We stopped at red light on Superior Street and 2nd Avenue.
The car next to us, a lemon, revved up like a cat in heat.
Two dorky dudes in the lemon blew us kisses, lifted bushy eyebrows, made vulgar hand motions.
“Hey, baby. Wanna get down? Wanna do it? Wanna touch my thing, baby?
We laughed until our sides burned.
I mean, did they actually think they had a chance in hell…With Us?
At Denfeld High, they didn’t exist, would never be acknowledged.
At Denfeld High, we were, well, much more.
Sue revved up her Camero, which was the same color as her toe nails, blush rose.
She stepped on it.
We roared off with a hiss, a kiss my ass, a jet stream of cigarette smoke and Halston perfume smoldering behind us.
We roared off with Prince making love to us from a cracked cassette deck.
Three summers we were together cruising blacktop—-our skin and hairspray sticking to plastic car seats like something beautiful, rare.
We were young.
We were immortal.
I think about Sue every June, and I wonder if she thinks about me.
Does she think about me when the scent of green rises to the surface like a hunger, like a thirst, like a thousand unfinished poems…
…longing to be remembered?
—Dear, Readers, do you have any special memories from high school? Do you ever feel summery in the midst of winter?