Roof II

What?

I’m a lesbian. I had a girlfriend
at Camp Corbitant last summer.
God, I can’t believe I’m telling you this
after how Mom reacted.

How’d she react?

I really don’t want to talk about it.

That well, huh?

Are you really being the coolest big brother
imaginable, or are you playing cool?

I look at the driveway for a minute.

Really.

I mean, it’s… weird… thinking of you
with girls…

I actually really hope you don’t.

That’s not what I meant. I mean…
it’ll take me a while to get used to,
but… I mean…

I look at my hands.
She drinks.

What’s her name?

She looks at the street. Renee.

…Pretty name.
When… when do I get to meet her?

She broke my heart.

Oh. In that case, I don’t want
her anywhere near you.

She takes a deep breath
then a big swig.

Do you remember the day
I came home from preschool
when that stupid girl wouldn’t play
some stupid game with me?

I think so.

You hugged me for a long time
and told me that girl was trying
to write my story, so I should tell her
to shut up. No one ever told me I could do that
before. Or since.

I did?

Yeah, you did. You could have said
get over it, or gone up your stairs.
It’s still some of the best advice
anyone’s ever given me.

She hugs me, wipes a tear from her cheek,
and hands me a bottle of water.

…Don’t worry.

I just wanted you to know
I haven’t forgotten.

Hey, is that Mumbles?

What? She looks up the hill
where he’s disappearing
around the bend. Whatever.
He can go wherever he wants.

I look at her for a minute.
She won’t meet my eye.

Across the park, one of the houses looks
like it’s on fire. Behind us,
the wind plays
slow, sustained
notes on the weathervane,
like something Charles Laquidara
would sneak on WBCN before dawn.

Your turn.

I inhale.

I don’t have a story
quite like that.

That’s okay. I think I’m gay
enough for both of us.

Faint sirens start
on Washington Street.

Okay. Now I take a deep breath.
You know, I had a girlfriend
in high school.

No! Who?
When did you become a spy?

Really. I saw her again
just the other day.

Added: March 27, 2013 | Last changed: January 23, 2015