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Two Homes

Vivianne Rumble

The slow rattling  

crunch of leaves echoes 

as we hike through the  

dense spikes of ferns  

and vines. A world of  

mosquitoes and Spanish moss  

near the low tide of the  

marsh, encompassed by 

hundreds of mud crabs. There is 


a comfortable silence 

between us as we gain  

ahead on the rooted path,  

glimpsing sights of driftwood  

and pampas grass  

swaying in the stickily 

summer air. I look to you in 


wonder of where we 

are headed next, if it’s 

the beach further along 

the trail, or the tree that 

has limbs like a  

swing. You pause, then start  


again as if you know every  

trail on the Georgia coast  

and I believe you. The gulls  

squawk, cicadas buzz  

nestled in bushes, and I sculpt 

around the idea of what a  

childhood could have been  

if you were both there.  


The separate bedrooms  

a county away, lugging my toys  

from house to house. I see  

the reflection of myself  

in you—the curved shape  

of our jaws, the circular 

tip of my nose, how we  

walk with our hands  

in our pockets. Our legs  


get bitten despite the spray  

we doused ourselves in as  

the peachy sky dawns, leaving  

the thickness of the woods  

and the whispering  

crashes of the sea  

behind. I turn up the  

radio, the metal station  


that is your favorite and  

one that grows on me  

each visit. You drive me back  

home across the state line  

bridge and dozens of  

stoplights, looking to the  

shifted cloudy sky that for  

once didn’t have its afternoon  

rains. I blink an hour away  

sitting at home, 

already missing the  

adventures with you.  

Spring 2024

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