Who among us could assume security? The answer sat before us like a lump of cold flesh to be paid when the collectors came. Naturally, we learned to speak around it. We shared our alarm about the weather instead. By its whims we could admit something. It had to do with extremity. ––Of certain conditions and of a common need. But what for? Maybe some chance at grace.
Over time, something loosened the ties we had to some familiar arrangements of words while cementing others. Come here, we said to one another. In the makeshift camp where we had surrendered what little we could carry to some common fate, still to be determined. Tarp walls blew in the winds and we listened.
Sometimes we heard one another step outside to address something else. We all did this. One at a time, without ceremony, and alone. We were not ready to discuss these things. Not yet. But when the winds left, I could hear the others say to something just beyond the camp, Come here.