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by Billy Thrasher


You were five when you got out of bed at 2 a.m. and padded into the kitchen, as I wrote about 

cold dark days on my laptop, at the lamp-lit table taken from a Wendy’s restaurant. You wanted

to sleep with me and asked if I remembered when you would get out of bed, walk into the living room, lay on the couch next to me as I slept. I thought maybe you were too young to reminisce,


but maybe that was evidence you were growing up, wanting to store the memory. I hope you

do. My vivid memories began during kindergarten, and you’re starting school two weeks from

now. More memories will come. Keep them. I closed the laptop, that’s when you said you

wished your mom and I would get back together. You sat on the edge of the couch


like a soft gold nightlight that glimmered in the dark. Quiet. We lay down. My left arm

outstretched under the pillow, the other on my side. You cupped next to me wearing your gold

play dress. It was warm next to you, too warm for the quilt. Almost asleep. Were you? A long

time, maybe an hour, then you got up and said you wanted to sleep in your bed. You kissed my

cheek, we said good-night together, you said good-night once more, kissed my cheek again.


A feather is not that soft. You padded the floor to your room, shut the door, gold light shimmered from below into the hallway then darkness. Silence. I was cold and reached for the quilt.

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