On a lake…

Emily

The first day of fall.

A couple weeks into the new semester and he found himself not in his Comp Civ 300 class but floating lazily in a creaky-oared rowboat on the tiny pond of a WPA-built park, tucked away in the foothills, a pretty, green-eyed sophomore facing him as he put up the oars.

130 year old oaks reached out from the edges of the rowing pond and an old Spanish American War cannon poked proudly from a cement nook. When he was a kid, the ornamental wall around the cannon wasn’t there. And there were a few other cannons, as well, strewn haphazardly along the banks. Like toys a once-proud owner couldn’t bear to throw out, he thought once, walking through the deserted park long after closing.

There’d been an older man rowing aimlessly around the pond when they got there but his time ran out or he got bored soon enough and they were left alone on the water. A radio buzzed faintly from the boathouse and a handful of little kids played on the cannon. It was a weekday and quiet enough that he could hear the nearly still water lapping gently against the boat.

He had the oars up and now sprawled out his legs and leaned back, gazing at her.

A trio of crows flew in loose formation across the half-sky that opened between the trees over the pond. Faint, rippled clouds floated high in a preternaturally blue sky. A pair of ducks quacked in undecipherable sequence from the other side of the pont, 50 yards away. In the boathouse, somebody changed the radio from one rock station to another. So faint he almost couldn’t make it out: Sam Cook’s “You Send Me.”

She was wearing a white, linen dress… the kind where the neckline is low and the shoulders are apparently designed to keep falling down the arm . Her dark hair tumbled over her shoulders, a half smile played on her unrouged lips and her green eyes held his gaze. Her long, tanned leg reached out so her sandal-less foot could momentarily touch the side of his thigh. In the moment of the gesture he found a world of dreams and fears, swirling like a cosmos in formation then disappearing back into whatever dimension holds our deepest and most secret longings.

Emily

Internet Archive page for this recording
previous version: Saturday, March 25, 2006

Emily

On a lake
the faded yellow row boat
drifts in lazy circles
while I fall in love with you

Emily Emily
watch the sky go around
Emily Emily
watch the sky

Willows weep
tears melt in cool water
your white cotton dress
you warm brown legs
your deep green eyes
Emily

Emily Emily
watch the sky go around
Emily Emily
watch the sky

(C)1982, TK Major

Share

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.