12.24.2013 Journal Prompt

Photo by Alec Soth
Photo by Alec Soth

December 24, 2013: On Christmas Eve…

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2 thoughts on “12.24.2013 Journal Prompt

  1. Lindsay

    There’s this cute and goofy picture of her some place. Up in the attic, in a box of stuff I’ve kept. In the picture she’s wearing street skates and her legs are bare and they are the longest legs you ever saw. She looks like a model. She’s wearing a black top and her hair’s tied back from her face in a ponytail and she has this expression on her face that just is and isn’t her.

    I remember taking the picture and she was so impatient and I took my time, framing it just right so I got all of her in, and that’s why she’s looking like that and her head cocked in that way she had when she was being all uppity.

    Her name’s Linney and the picture was taken right back at the start of things. It was Christmas Eve and the snow had shut up the town and she was skating on the parts of roads that had been new-cleared. It was cold as cold and I said she should put more clothes on. I was blue just watching her.

    She stayed out for hours, just skating up and down, and doing mini jumps in the air, her arms and legs flung wide so she was throwing star shapes in the air, shapes I just couldn’t catch with the camera.

    Afterwards, we went back to my place. My folks were out doing the Christmas Eve visits to family and friends. I made Linney hot chocolate with a shot of my dad’s whisky in it and one for me too. We took our drinks upstairs and I swear Linney’s legs were pale as clouds and cold to the touch, and her teeth were chattering so much she couldn’t speak. I put her in my bed and I got in with her and under the covers I rubbed her till she could feel herself again.

    The whisky helped and Linney in my bed helped, too; I was suddenly brave and kissing her and touching her under her sweater and she was laughing and not saying to me to stop. That was my first time, and she said it was hers. That’s how I know it was Christmas Eve. In the box in the attic I still have the diary from that time and us doing it in my bed is the last entry I made for that year.

    We lasted pretty well for kids. Longer than most of our friends at school and long enough we did it in my bed the following Christmas Eve. I didn’t write that in any diary because we were doing it so regular by then that I never thought it was special.

    I reckon there should be a light in the sky for all the last times you do things. Like the last day I ever wore shorts to school, or the last week of Mrs Pinner as our teacher, or the last time minute you ever believe in Santa. There should have been a light in the sky that Christmas Eve to say that was the last time I would fuck Linney Cartwell.

    She’d be fifty this year, same as me. Except she isn’t and never will be. She was hit by a bus on Letson Street two days before her twenty-first birthday. I read about it in the paper and I just couldn’t believe it was her, except there was a picture and it was a copy of the one I’d taken of the sixteen year old Linney wearing skates and not much else and looking cute and goofy at the same time.

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