Michael Boyko

So much for life

Evening by the strip mall. Pretty sky, but everything smells like canned vegetables. Losing scratch tickets on the ground, all over the place. There. A one legged woman is gliding toward me on crutches, in a white dress that billows out far in the valley wind, what light is left coming through the fabric. She is young, but she can't tell that I am looking at her, so I know what she'll look like when she's old, the way people can with each other if they look secretly. That same wind bestows life, pushes the paper scraps along the ground toward her foot, suddenly she's swimming upstream, grace of a white goldfish. My memory goes then, and I can't think of what I had planned to do when the wind finally stopped, and I came to a soft halt near that kind of movement. My own stillness so very apparent, my own age showing through my young face, no one looking.

Michael Boyko lives in New Hampshire. He is currently enrolled in the MFA in Creative Writing program at Goddard College and works at a record store.