I wake up with her skin against mine, her mouth microscopically open, a rhythmic string of murmurous little breaths falling off the edge of her nude lips. The dark has faded but the silence and the calm reminds me of a cemetery, only the slow movements of her chest under the silk distinguishes her from the image of a porcelain doll.
She opens her eyes, her hair a meteor shower across the pillow. We're in mother's bed, she asks me, like Henry did, about the framed picture on the night stand table. My grandfather in black & white in the snowfall, the way he looks into the camera, through the decades and the distance.
We mix our coffee with brandy to dampen the headache and the disparate fragments of memories from last night. September is just hours and a thunderstorm away and the winds here are starting to feel different.