She Scooped the Ice Cream

I remember that you welcomed me home from work with a hug. It was a Saturday night. I had flown one call.

I was late the night before and that made you worry.

The roads were better tonight–the ice near entirely gone.

Your son popped out of what I can only guess was another not-quite-discernibly chosen hiding place. He had had on his favorite basketball jersey, baring his skinny arms, as this time there was no t-shirt underneath.

I’ve been gone for too many long day shifts, I thought.

I told him I wanted to talk school work before he took his shower and went to bed. Then I began to take off my boots.

You listened patiently as I explained to him the “in’s and out’s” of following instructions and the particular importance of neat work.

Before my lecture was finished, you got up from the table. You opened the freezer. At the table, I continued to instruct and correct.

You walked to the silverware drawer and returned with the ice cream scoop in hand. It was the second one I bought for you. Do you remember how embarrassed we both were when I couldn’t stop myself from noticing that you had absentmindedly placed the first one in the dishwasher after all? Whoever would make rules for cleaning an ice cream scoop?

I was still teaching the boy as you set the spoon down beside the two bowls and put the ice cream back.

What’s the rush, I thought?

But I didn’t ask. Instead I hoped to guess right. I hoped it was his long-awaited bedtime.

I hoped my hands would soon feel your soft skin and find themselves bumping clumsily into your own as you removed your soft clothes. I hoped my eyes would see in yours that you were waiting for me to take you to our bed. I hoped my ears would hear and feel your impatient and impassioned breath. I hoped my lips would feel your tongue respond to my own. I hoped my body would press eternally into yours. I hoped.

I hoped.

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