On Leave

He stood against the doorframe, looking at the street lamps, then at her stretched out and sweating. She had written him letters from that couch, perhaps. He had them with him. He could pull them out to ask her when she woke, if he wanted.

He wondered where she kept his letters. Probably strewn around this room: one in the spine of a book, two stacked along with her Canadian stamps, one with her blank paper. He could look for them while she slept, if he wanted.

He went back to the bedroom and lay down. He couldn’t shake his dream and went back every half hour just to see her breathing.  At around five or six she opened her eyes. She meant to smile, but only sighed. He watched her stretch and slowly recover her body. The streetlamps were still on beside the morning sun.

She stood, a little unsteady, and passed him on her way to the kitchen. She touched his stomach as she went and mumbled something about tea. He crossed to the couch. Several minutes and she returned with two mugs, looking a bit more lucid. She handed him his tea and sat down, pulling her thighs up against her chest. They sat, and drank their tea, and he did not mention the letters.


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