**This is a poem I wrote in February, 2010, while at the NC Center for the Advancement of Teaching. The final lines are from Adrienne Rich’s poem “Diving into the Wreck”. The initial image came from a free-write that we did while exploring a teenage memory. The story that emerges had a life all its own! (This was originally posted on this site in October, 2010.)
Deep, dark tans require long hours
Of soaking up the sun while
Covered in thick layers of coconut oil.
Like bees to honey
The teenage boys are attracted to the scent.
A boy carrying a beer meets a girl carrying a camera and
A trashy novel in which his name appears.
And lust – or maybe even love – run rampant
On the sandy shores.
That’s how we met – you and I
On that steamy, sweaty Saturday in June.
And here we are today
On this chilly November Tuesday
A lifetime of beachfront memories
Windblown and weak
From the hurricanes of life.
We are, I am, You are
By cowardice and courage
The ones who find our way back to this scene
Carrying a knife, a camera, a book of myths
In which our names do not appear.