On a too hot bus, my sister and I traveled through fields of sunflowers.
Because we couldn’t stop arguing, we sat rows apart.
I see us staring out the windows. Or eating the food we took
from the motel breakfast. Bread rolls wrapped in napkins.
Little tubs of yogurt. I see us washing our hands
in the thin stream of water in the bus’s lavatory.
Wanting to apologize, but too embarrassed of our inability
to protect or soothe the other. Far away, our mother had died,
though we didn’t know it. Our grandmother, rightly afraid
of how we’d bear the news, waited until we returned to tell us.
I was seventeen and she was twenty. I see us writing postcards
from Florence and Capri. Today I swam in the Emerald Grotto…
Our handwriting wobbly from the vibrations of the bus—
gaps and smudges where one pen ran dry and another began,
rows of drowsy hearts beneath our names.