Do you remember? We used to live in black and white, inside crisp shadows and under GE light bulbs. We were excellently photographable: me in my clean strappy T-shirt and creased linen trousers, you in your Ivory Soap slip and brassiere. We were neat and sharp, locked in a post-sepia, post-coital daydream.
I kept my Brycreem beside the soap dish, and every morning shaved the same whiskered face, and made the same geometric adjustments to my hair. First cup of coffee, 7:15 a.m.; second cup, 7:32. Eventually, I noticed the pattern and tried to alter it. My hair did not grow, my morning beard did not change.
And you: you were always curled in the same comma shape on the bed when I woke you, and you exhaled the same breath, a sour gust of cocktails and Lifesaver Wint O Greens. We were black and white and chilled martinis.
I know we exchanged morning kisses and entertained each others bodies, sacredly. I don’t recall any of the other rooms in the house. We were permanent and affixed on simplicity. I don’t know what changed, sweetheart. Was it me?
Now we are creased photographs in someone else’s nostalgia collection. When our page is turned – we’re on page 715 or 732, I think – we are clumsily framed against a dark fake-velvet backdrop, bordered by cracked Scotch tape.
But… oh, honey, do you remember? I don’t think the memory belongs to us anymore.