By Kennedy Coyne
I sat at my desk. She left her books. Or forgot them. I couldn’t remember. Couldn’t read them and couldn’t give them back, either. I put them on the bottom of my bookshelf. I knew they were there. But consciously ignored them. I started reading a lot about permanence. Not intentionally, but it seemed to be everywhere. On some page.
At my desk I stared at this blank document. Sometimes it welcomed me. Not tonight. Maybe that was okay. I didn’t want her anymore. I didn’t. But I missed her. She came to see me everyday. Until everyday turned into maybe I’ll see you tomorrow. And tomorrow turned to next week. My bookshelf housed my books. Mostly.
I opened Jorie Graham one day. Erosion. Coffee grinds inside on “Age of Reason.” She spilled the coffee grounds. On the page was a line marked in pencil. We talked about collecting twigs. Finding a path and collecting the best kinds of twigs. What are the best, I’d ask. She’d tell me we’d just know. We would build little huts and homes with our twigs. She used to read me that poem. Tell me that she found deep enough.
And I remembered the snowwomyn building. Womyn with a y. But the snow wouldn’t pack. It was powder. And even if it could, it would melt. She read me “Age of Reason” instead. What if there is deep enough?
Erosion wasn’t my book. Sometimes I can’t look at my bookshelf. It isn’t mine. Sometimes I stare out my window instead. Waiting. Waiting again. I didn’t want to forget her. I was alone.
Ken Coyne is a fiction writer from upstate New York. She's a zesty Eileen Myles aficionado who has been on an NYU waitlist for five months now and has been drinking a lot of lemonade while waiting. 'Another Night' is a piece from a collection in the works. She tweets occasionally @kenlcoyne