As I was wondering about Flint River yesterday afternoon, James leaned toward me and asked if I’d ever seen the element mercury. I never even think about mercury.
He pointed out a few things here and there, white light shining off his bald head, but mostly, he said nothing, and mostly, I pretended to be interested in walls while watching him move, look, change, turn.
Back in the car, I kept sticking my hand out the window, feeling the cold air, and then placing my cold hand on my cheek. “This is what’s real,” I whispered to myself, more than once.
And tonight, I was awkwardly but bravely standing in the back doorway of the shop, passively waiting for something to happen… like a fall, followed by a catch or a crash. Something.