FOLK - michelle reale

We tried to be fascinated by one another in the car on the way to the folk festival. We’d met over e-mail. He wrote with dashes like Emily Dickinson and I fell for it. He picked me up at a Denny’s on the highway, asked me not to smoke when I slid one from the pack. We had things to say, like the fact that he petrifies citrus fruits on windowsills and has a lime back from the summer of ’87. I told him about my fascination with the two drums of Ireland, the Lambeg and Bodhran and how my loyalties can become easily divided. The air-conditioning was full blast. My eyes went dry. We ran out of things to say. At the festival we saw each other but he just looked straight ahead like he didn’t know me after all we shared. On the way home we passed by a ramshackle house with a statue of a big wooden bear, his claws out. On one side was “Welcome”. On the other side, “Go Away.” I lit my cigarette and didn’t care. “Imagine that,” I laughed. He rolled down the window and looked the other way.