We Shared a Cigarette

By Rachel Lastra

On a stone bench. It was spring, I think. Cold but not too cold. This was back when I smoked, obviously. Marlboro 100s. You remember? The long ones. You joked that it was like having a meal. Like I’d bought you dinner. You were telling me a story about a high school friend of yours. You said she was too good at leaving people behind. Your hair was down. The smoke bloomed from your lips. A ghostly flower. And I wondered what you meant by that. But I watched you take another drag. Your hair. Your lips. Those eyes. And forgot to ask. What did you mean? I wonder it still, but I can’t ask you now. Because I lost your number, and I can’t remember your last name.

Rachel Lastra drinks peppermint tea. She composes flash in the notes app on her phone, and longer pieces in a notebook or on the computer. She plays “cat family” and “dance party” and “airport” with her daughter. She reads lots of books and has cold toes.

Art by Lesley C. Weston (Digital pastel)

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