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#19 Dear Hank & John: Discoveries in Arizona

All my life so far
I have been afraid
Of cactus,
Spiders
Rattlesnakes.

The tall fourteen year old boy who led me through the desert whispered, “Come over this way.” Picking my steps carefully over an earth strangely familiar, I found four small holes, large enough for a root that might have been torn out or a black snake hole in Ohio, that I hated.

“What is it?” I said. “Some cute prairie dog or an abandoned post hole maybe?”

“No,” he said. “She’s down there with her children. She doesn’t hate you, she’s not afraid. She’s probably asleep, she’s probably keeping warm with something I don’t know about. And all I know is sometimes in sunlight, two brown legs reach out. It is hard to get a look at her face, even in the museum she turns away. I don’t know where she’s looking.”

“I have lived all my life in terror of a tarantula, and yet I have never even seen a tarantula turn her face away from me.”

“That’s alright,” said the boy. “Maybe she’s never seen you either.”



//

James Wright《To a Blossoming Pear Tree》1977, United States

Dear Jimmy,

I think I can finally say I’m over you. After 4, nearly 5 years of being hopelessly in love with you I feel at peace at long last. I still think you’re the most beautiful man to grace the earth, but I no longer yearn for you like I did before. At least,  I don’t think so.

I always knew we’d never be together. Your older and popular and just all round better than me. I’m not even entirely sure you’ve noticed me. It seems sad, letting you go after all these years.

I just want to say thank you. Thank you for making eye contact with me above the piano. Thank you for joking around with me backstage. Thank you for kissing me in the production of Thoroughly Modern Millie, the musical I took our character names from to use in this letter. Thank you for existing.

-Dorothy