I Sailed to You
Remember when they thought the moon would swallow the sea and the winds would wear flat the earth? We met that summer over boardwalk hotdogs and soda from the fountain, the counter boy’s hat like a small, white boat.
They told us it was all going to change.
We didn’t believe anything could change the salt air and hot mustard.
I told you late one night, as we lay entwined on the porch during a rare summer drizzle, that if the seas went away and the land was worn flat that I would sail to you anyway.
You looked at me as if I was crazy. You should have remembered the only crazy I’ve ever been is for you.
Bicycle wheels and tattered sailcloth filched from my uncle’s garage, fruit crate slats and old boards from the deck, clothesline for rigging.
I raised the sails, caught the wind and I’ll never forget your smile when I sailed up the street to your house. You got in behind me and we went up and down the street in lazy curves. I tried to tack into the wind like I’d read about and we convinced ourselves that it worked. We knew that the moon could never swallow the sea and the wind could never wear flat the earth. Everything would be just as it was, forever.
I wanted to kiss you then, but I was afraid. It was daylight after all.
Sail Wagon, Brooklyn. between ca. 1910 and ca. 1915, via The Library of Congress.