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Wet Signature

Signed, Sealed, and Delivered

By Christy MunsonPublished 2 months ago Updated 2 months ago 3 min read
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Wet Signature
Photo by Alex Perz on Unsplash

Even as I shove the wide white envelope through the metal slot, the gummy stickiness of its licked seal sticks to my tongue. A nervous energy spitball foams in my mouth. I swallow hard. The nasty taste lingers as the envelope vanishes.

Good riddance.

I can't stomach this knot, knowing you're going to open it. Soon.

Good riddance, envelope. Not good riddance, you.

I didn't want this.

The blue chipped handle slams shut, a snapping bite. That indifferent creak sounds weathered as the old back door, its hinges broken in a flood of rage that neither one of us could quite contain. I shudder to think of the last time I allowed that hefty bruit to thwap itself closed against its rebuilt frame. How still the air felt. How crisp the winter. How silent the night.

I tense with worry. Did I misspell the words? Wouldn't be the worst thing.

Did I add too many digits, an extra 1 or 2, to the address? This shaking hand isn’t what it once was.

I know the postage I used is enough. More than enough. I gave all I’ve got.

The envelope has only to reach its destination five blocks north of the P.O., two turns off Elden. Practically across the street from where I find myself. Thrown in shade.

Trees don't offer much anymore. We've chopped them down for bright-eyed neighbors, newly domesticated. Still in love with being in love. What shade there is comes from us.

Do you remember that stalwart northern pine? The one we once sought to shelter under. As if a pine could offer anything but needles? We didn't think of it in that moment.

We were too wrapped up in ourselves. I clung to you as you clung to me as that sudden spring shower dropped in from the west with fat wet drops that clung to our sweet young skin, whetting our insatiable appetites. You were perfect, oozing confidence and vigor, with that grin that always did me in. You remember, don’t you? John Cougar was at it again, telling tales about Jack and Diane from my Ford’s cracked vinyl dash.

The lightning was real. But damn, I think you and I, we made the thunder.

I could have hand carried it. Had the courts allowed.

My eyes drop to the concrete. The wind speaks in tongues. It's cold here now. Do you feel it? I'm chilled to the bone. It's that deeply penetrating Londonderry freeze, like our final chapter.

But winter soon will be breaking. Spring wants her time in the sun.

It always comes back round to good. Doesn't it?

You could change your mind, Love. Don't even read it. Tear it up. Don't add your Hancock.

I feel the chill nipping at my cheeks and hunger for whiskey or, better yet, the warmth of your arms closing in around my battered shell. I used to feel you everywhere, no matter how far apart we might have been. You were my exoskeleton.

It's not too late.

*

I watch nature's show as Mr. Postman keys the clanky blue box. Slushy yellow clumps of snow slosh and spill over the bullnosed edge of this dirty sidewalk. Icicles, too new to be long for this world, drip in slow surrender. I watch each drop sail away in search of a better drainage ditch.

It's out of my hands.

My car keys jingle in my pocket, egging me on. Homeward bound. But I cannot recall, precisely, which way that might be.

My house key's on a keyring framed by a 2x2-inch picture. You and me, and the life I once believed in.

I'll be seeing you in all the old familiar places...

Somewhere, not too far from here, a bounding husky barks a half-howled song. I remember that refrain. Longing lifted to happiness. His person has returned.

Maybe it's not too late to get a dog?

***

Copyright © 02/16/2024 by Christy Munson. All rights reserved.

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About the Creator

Christy Munson

My words expose what I find real and worth exploring.

Welcome! provides a bit of context for my writing, and recommends some of my fav Vocal creators.

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Nice work

Very well written. Keep up the good work!

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  1. Compelling and original writing

    Creative use of language & vocab

  2. Easy to read and follow

    Well-structured & engaging content

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    Niche topic & fresh perspectives

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    The story invoked strong personal emotions

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Comments (2)

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  • F Cade Swanson2 months ago

    The way you play with hope and loss, with agency and witnessing- like you're seeing yourself and being seen by yourself. It's a powerful way to narrate the experience of not wanting to believe what you know to be true, and also showing that many truths can exist simultaneously. Love the way you play with sound and the pain of that last line. Thank you for sharing this.

  • Kendall Defoe 2 months ago

    This is fantastic, and I am afraid to ask about the origins of this one...

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