Samantha Garner

Every Kiss a War Cover Kissing Booth

An Island

By Samantha Garner

The house
            The summer house, and we are the first ones to rent it this year. There are four rooms but two of us. We pick the room along the side of the house, the side with the hammock and the porch, more like a boardwalk that winds from the front to the back. The living room is gigantic, meant for eight, and we drive into town and buy $1 DVDs after we assemble all the puzzles.

The heat
            Summer on the island starts late, and we’re too early for the heat. We walk out the back door and down to the bay, we dip our feet in but we have to wear long sleeves. The water is freezing and we shriek, staying stubbornly in place. We have committed and we have something to prove.

The night
            The tide comes and goes. We watch the moonlight chase it. We are lulled to sleep by the thump of bats hunting moths against the window. It’s almost comforting. They are guardians. They make the only noise in the deep night.

The morning
            The field in front of the house is wide and long and still, often misty. Early, as our car shakes slowly up the dirt road, a fox emerges from the tall grass, considers us briefly, and moves on. I watch as its tail disappear behind the trees. I jab a finger out the window. Did you see that too? He takes his eyes off the road and grins, his eyes crinkling at the corners. We see everything. On this island we are brand new.

Samantha writes from Hamilton, Ontario. Her work has previously appeared in Kiss Machine, The Fiddlehead, Storychord and WhiskeyPaper. In 2012 she completed the Humber School for Writers’ Creative Writing by Correspondence program, mentored by Donna Morrissey.