A Very Short Story: Barton Springs, Austin, Texas

We go to Target because I forget to pack a bathing suit. I’m self-conscious about my legs, which I haven’t shaved in ages. It’s still winter at home. My sister tells me not to worry. No one knows us here. They paved a riverbed, or built some concrete around it. It flows ice cold and is a peculiar cross between nature and nurture. Fish and concrete. A moving current in a dammed-up pool. The occasional crunchy bit of river grass. Ducks by the diving board. We sun ourselves on a grassy hill with Texan strangers, all of us a little shy about the earliness of the season, searching for the spots of sun between the leaves. I wonder whether we are betrayed as visitors. Something about how pale we are. Or about how we don’t really know how to pick the best lounging spot, hemming and hawing while the water drips down our ankles. We, the out-of-towners or the invaders, out to steal a bit of someplace else for ourselves, to carry home some warmth to where there is none.

Tags:

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.