Viewed from Here

by Jane Davitt




“And the views,” Danny winds up. “The goddamn views here…”

Steve takes a long slow sip of beer. The sun is shining down on the lanai, dusting them both with gold. Steve’s shimmering. Okay, maybe Danny’s had one too many beers.

“’The views’,” Steve repeats. “You hate our views?”

“Hell yes! Everywhere I look, there’s a rainbow! Rainbow’s are special! Here, you get them every freaking day. And everything’s so green…”

“New Jersey isn’t green? Anywhere?”

Danny has to think about that one. “In places,” he says reluctantly. “Mostly it’s street-color.”

“A streetcar named desire.”

“What?”

Steve squints at the bottle in his hand as if it’s committed arson and mopery. “Nothing. But if you want a view you’ll like, I’ve got one.”

Danny blames the beer for the ease in which Steve gets him out of his seat and into a hammock slung between two trees on the beach. Hammocks are for sailors. He gets seasick watching The Little Mermaid.

“There,” Steve says with satisfaction rounding the word. “Now you can see what it’s all about.”

Steve vanishes and Danny’s left swinging. Swinging isn’t his thing, so he’s glad when the back and forth becomes a suspension above the sand, his body supported but free, flying, floating, gravity not an issue.

The sky above is the bluest a sky can get, and a cloud is floating by just to stop it being boring. The beer made it into the hammock and Danny cranes his neck to take another sip, then lets the bottle fall to water the sand. Too much effort and a wind, high in the heavens, has scutted the little cloud over just an inch or two.

Got to watch those clouds. Tricky little balls of fluff.

He drowses and dreams, the hammock swaying just a little as he breathes, and the sky darkens to indigo, to violet, to purple.

Then Steve’s face is above him, hovering, eyes, nose, mouth…mouth. “How do you like the view?”

Danny reaches up, his arm heavy with sunlight and sleep, and hooks his hand around Steve’s neck. Pauses, waiting for any resistance, and pulls Steve closer when there isn’t any in sight.

Steve tastes of salt and sun. He’s been swimming, floating in water while Danny’s been suspended in air.

Sea meets sky.


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