The Spoils of War

I used to fantasize about the life we would have. Simple. Isolated. We’d go west. We’d have a little cabin tucked away in some mountain range. An east-facing window would catch all of the morning light, pouring the sun across whatever he’d be in the middle of creating. He’d spend his mornings lost in the works of James Hetfield, Werner Heisenberg, and Thomas Moran. Smoking endless cigarettes, his bare feet standing in front of his easel, he’d paint and draw and empty his soul onto a canvas. I’d spend my mornings cleaning up his messes – the clothes scattered about, the coffee cups he leaves like a map of his whereabouts – and silently worshiping him. When he’d emerge from the ramshackle space we’d call “the studio”, we would spend the rest of our day in the workshop building beautiful things. Simple things. Anything. He’d dance me around in the sawdust while I sang to him off-key. In the evenings, he’d cook me dinner while I worked on the next great American novel. He’d listen patiently while I wax poetic over song lyrics or the musings of Kierkegaard. We’d soak together in a giant bathtub, sipping our whiskey and debating the finer points of physics and philosophy. Then we’d fuck like it was the last time, every time. 

I used to fantasize about this life. I used to tell him about it, and he’d add his own subtleties to the vision. We used to make plans together – back when we both believed we had a future. Back when we had hope.

 

Fredricksburg, VA

A believer in consent, healing narratives, and gravity; a doubter of god, politicians, and health benefits of kale; a curator of playlists and tattoos.