Chasing The Sun
by Sarah Hina
There is a cathedral I return to.
Not the slim province of angels and resurrections, where long-lashed girls bow their heads in time to the salty scriptures. I’m talking about the long nave of recollection, where you and I spent a haloed youth wandering, and briefly touching, with fevers of words for trails, a brown hand my constant guide. Where a loamy scent led us past dead leaves and deader logs, into the quiet fix of the forest, the sacred altar. You touched my hair there, once.
This promise of the mind I retain like a yellowing photograph, smudged about its edges. Chewed on by time’s chemical mouth, yet preserved in this tinny memory, this (almost) blackness.
Yet now you come. The stained glass unloosening, shards reassembling. You told me on the phone that marriage is a dead end, the final purgatory to sense and sensibility. Your wife believes in miracles. You only believed in me, you said, and laughed to cover. You were never embarrassed, before.
I would like to believe in you. I would like for you to touch my hair again. But faith is a frothy, youthful affair, and you are as elusive to me now as that white god they sing to on Sundays. I love that old photograph, you see. I love pressing its terrible stillness against my sepia-stained heart. I cannot risk its loss. You will not see me at the train station tomorrow.
My hair, darling Richard, is gone gray.