She liked to hang from the fan, her legs dangling
onto the kitchen table, her skirt riding up her thighs,
until he had had enough of her hysterics and threw her out.
The vodka saturated her chest and arms.
She took her heels off and felt the chill of the sidewalk rising
into her feet, grasping the back of her heels. Walking to church,
families averted their eyes—she would have rather wrapped
herself in her hair and stuck her face in the tuft of her armpit
than admit she needed help. I asked if she wouldn't like to drive
north of Salzburg to breathe a little easier and drink a little more,
not talk about anything, just watch the cows chew their cud.
Why not. I knew of a party in an old farmhouse in Branau.
My resolve to take her hardened. Something about
her orange fingernails digging into the mud.