Field at Dusk
As far as I can see in front of me are soy beans. The hazy summer heat is made musical with insects and birds - their cries coming so close that I half expect to see them rise from the field. Evening is coming on, slow and thick, creeping up the distant horizon and bruising the sky purple.
I stand at the edge of the field, toes curled in stained tennis shoes, nails bitten to the quick.
Behind me is a two story white farm house that creaks when you pass from room to room. On the front of the house a porch and on that porch a swing. I've learned not to grip the chain as I push back, glide forward, because the links twist and pinch the soft parts of my hand.
I can hear adults talking, several voices mixing together over sweating glasses of iced tea and the clink-clatter of dinner dishes being washed. My mouth is full of cantaloupe that came from the garden earlier today, my nose full of remembered sweetness.
A breeze sneaks across the field, tumbling, rolling green leaves. Its progress is clear, a wave rippling away. I brush hair out of my face, kick at the dirt.
Standing at the edge of the field is almost like standing at the edge of the ocean. If I walked forward, took one step, the plants would swallow me whole.
I hear a screen door slam and I turn to the house. My great-grandmother comes through the back door with a bowl of kitchen scraps that she tosses onto the compost pile. Seeing me she waves, calling me back to the house, to iced tea and peach cobbler, calling me back to sitting on the linoleum floor with my brother and listening to the adults talk.
I run toward her, feeling the empty field at my back.