On this bank of the lake, I am reminded of a Richard Siken poem by the name of “Little Beast”:
“Tonight, by the freeway, a man eating fruit pie with a buckknife carves the likeness of his lover’s face into the motel wall. I like him and I want to be like him, my hands no longer an afterthought.”
It is still warm enough to shed my clothes, so I do. I step into the water. The mud that pools between my toes is something familiar. I cut my toe on the rocks, but I will not realize this until I am home and pulling off my socks, toes still muddy and covered in leaf-crumbs.
When we enter the woods, I take off his leash. He runs ahead, sniffing at the trail. Somehow, he knows this woods better than I do. I am not afraid that he will leave me; he always comes back. Our trips to the lake are welcome reprieves from the monotony of domesticity.