Wedding at Haystack Rock

Open Thought Vortex

by Leah Mueller

Evening ceremony, pebble sand inauspiciously littered with the bodies of dead seagulls. You in billowing shirt and black pants: me in pink lace dress, both velvet. In the distance kids play in the sand with long sticks. You are not their father, any more than I had one. Husband you understand, not boundary-setting: my children have long since learned to comprehend the reality of tiny spaces. They draw circles around their bodies, breathe with the required amount of oxygen. Your sister's friend arrives, red-faced and drunk. She gives us an ocean photo framed upside down, and I pack it dutifully, every time we move to a new home. The woman dies of alcoholism a few years later, but you and I remain stubbornly alive, married. Despite intention, we won't last long, either. My wedding ring falls into the sand, but the minister finds it, seconds before it…

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