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Thursday, 9/1/11 – Reading Lessons

She lays flat on her spine, opening herself to him like a tome, like a text, an erotic reference written in Braille.

There is knowledge here, one she wishes to share. Taking his blind fingers in her own, she guides them over her peaks and valleys as his lips form words foreign and disconnected from what was written.

She is easy with his words, placing her mouth to his and gently arranging his lips and tongue until the correct sounds are formed.

“It’s not reading.” These words are not her own, they belong to a friend, someone who never liked him. Someone who thought that she could do better . “It’s just repeating,” her friend said, “A parrot could do that.”

She has taught him an alphabet of vowels and he practices them now, a consonant-less litany of a-a-a-ahs, u-u-u-uhs, and o-o-ohs.

Hoping for a happier ending, she releases him. He is free to alter, to edit, to strike, rearrange, rewrite. She waits, her breath punctuating the empty spaces.

His fingers falter and slide slowly from her.

There is no ending, no understanding.

Dog-eared and worn, she folds herself closed and listens to him: wordless, asleep.

In the silent darkness she begins again. Aee, Bee, See, Dee, Eee, Eff, Gee…