“Lisa, you’re on fire.”
The words had barely left my lips when Lisa herself began to realize the flame. Panic set in; she was screaming. It was small and bright orange, curling up her synthetic blouse in a slow, gradual dance. I felt like I was watching a Spanish dancer’s wild rouge skirt in slow motion. I imagined it was quite hot.
A memory came to me in these moments. A car curving through the White Mountains. I’m sitting in the passenger seat. Squeaking windshield wipers pass back and forth. My ears are cold and I feel the weight of my heavy knit sweater on my chest. The windows are cracked, filling the car with chilled moist breath of the mountains in winter.
The once petite flame begins to drape over Lisa. She toils and spins about. I begin to feel the heat from where I sit across the table. My eyes widen with each of her tosses. I blink slowly.
The White Mountains reflect in my companion’s sunglasses. Bright, heavy clouds framed through the window mix with the rising smoke from my joint. “An awoken Winter,” I think to myself. This is so beautiful; I’m so happy.
There is no Lisa, only an erect burning blaze that smells of baked skin and charred fabric.
We pass a field and agree that it is beautiful and regal in its own sense. I wonder what it means to simply enjoy seeing things, if at any point in life you stop worrying about death and see life for all that it is: grace.
It moves to the curtains close by, reproducing the same crimson tango that took Lisa moments earlier. This is so beautiful; I’m so happy.
Later I stand up from the table and walk out of the house.