The lobby smells of Band-Aids, warm mashed potatoes, and damp socks.Being there reminds me of Greg, my high school on-again, off-again lumberjackish boyfriend who lived near the town incinerator.Where stack meets sky, the river pivots and heads southeast, under bridges and over rapids, pushing through falls and dams, around islands and along inlets, through Jay, Lewiston, Topsham, Brunswick, and other small towns, until it meets and mingles with five other rivers at Merrymeeting Bay, whereupon it finally and quietly slips into the Atlantic Ocean.
A few dirty buttresses of snow linger like pocked monoliths, meting out the new season’s arrival.
The swollen Androscoggin pushes flotsam downriver in the commotion of spring’s thaw, and insect hatches will soon begin bursting along its surface until summer opens like an oven.
I loved him like I would a sorry stuffed animal, one who had lost an eye or whose fur was rubbed raw.
Kelly, a girl who wore her black, perfectly feathered hair like a weapon, was in love with him too.
Ahead, we reach the top of the hill, and there, my old high school.
To the east, snowmobile trails and abutting them, the mill’s decommissioned landfill.
Lisa’s strength was tremendous for a sixth grader, her grit shaped by being one of the youngest girls in a family of 14 kids, most of them boys.
When I looked in the mirror that night at home, I was sure I looked different, the way you think you do when you lose your virginity.
That smell loitered amid the high school softball games I played beneath those stacks and lingered on my father’s shirtsleeves when he came home from work, allowing me to forgive the rank odor for what it provided.
From the porch steps of the house where I grew up, to the right, you’ll see a street of clapboarded homes, the quiet interrupted every now and then by a braking logging truck.