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Martha Fletcher

Pastoral, in the heart of the Adirondacks,
The Ledge Rock Inn nestled on a beech tree hill
one mile north of Whiteface Mountain —
roof dusted lightly with early morning snow.
Inside the main lodge, center of the room,
red oak logs burning in a cobblestone hearth.
To the left of fireside, a Christmas tree,
fragile white lights, adorned in trinkets and things.
Four days, three nights.
6:00 a.m. wake-up call.
Sally’s apron secured around his waist,
scrambling eggs, frying bacon, baking berry muffins.
Pastel scarf draped around my neck, sipping coffee,
my eyes fixed on you.
Looking past the window at the empty pool —
I wondered.
That night you wrapped me in a hand-woven throw.
Naked. Shivering. Laughing.
Truth or Dare.
I chose Dare.
An old clock crooked above the mantel,
a game of pool, you lost.
2:11 a.m., we watched what was left of our day
scattering in the sapphire afterglow.
We ate pie; crumbs fell in between the worn leather cushions,
my cherry-stained mouth rambling.
Your blue eyes hiding from me.
I let you fall asleep on the old leather couch.
On clear nights, sometimes, with the colors of my mind,
I stand outside, my hands raw and cold,
staring through the windows of The Ledge Rock Inn —
from the other side.