Kyle Hemmings’ “Sharon’s Next Move”


What the affair boiled down to: dry leaves. The emails have stopped. So has the dripping tap of apologies. Nobody was wrong after all. And nobody was right, either. It was just egos flaring and stubborn as a flamenco dance. She throws away the pills. On her Kindle Fire, she watches a movie in which a Japanese woman masturbates into oblivion. She’ll take up rubber stamping and grow a surfeit of petunias. Or she’ll move to the city and squash ants in a cheap efficiency apartment near East 6th and will dream of salamanders squirming in Path train stations, offering themselves to oncoming circles of light. She’ll catch up on O, Pioneers by Willa Cather sitting in a cafe; she watches out the window at all the little girls she could have been. She thinks interim and limbo are not necessarily the worst places to be stranded. At night, from her window, the city offers up its shadows. She can fill in their day faces, body types, hair colors. She’ll choose the one that looms closest, shows the best hope of sleeping with her, keeping her warm and forgetful, overnight.