Honourable mention in the 2nd Annual Geist Literal Literary Postcard Story Contest.
I fall in love with a sea nomad. He tossed a crab into my boat and I bought it for dinner that night. He wears a sarong wrapped around his head, a pair of Levis. We row to an island and all morning we swim with our clothes on and catch fish with our hands. In the afternoon we arm wrestle and play tag and smoke clove cigarettes. At dusk we race crabs along the beach and pinch each other with their claws.
I give him gifts: a Walkman, a watch. He drops them in the water. He steals from me: bracelet, flashlight, sunglasses.
My love lives in a village on stilts in the middle of the ocean. We walk along bamboo poles strung from hut to hut. I topple off into the water on the way to the bathroom and his grandmother cackles and spits red.
Don’t get your hopes up, a pearl diver says one evening as we barbecue squid over the fire. He’s fifteen, and the locals say he’s a little slow, if you know what I mean. My love races up a coconut tree without using his hands. Coconuts rain down. They thunk on the sand like skulls.