She was seven when I was twelve.
She was clever when I was water.
She took baths when I took showers.
She was X when I was the Science Patrol.
Her green Crayola was the one she loved best,
the one that ran away from her the quickest.
Godzilla was green and Frankenstein
and most of the rest of what she drew
had a jagged green outline to signify
A top-hatted granddad
with a knife and one eye.
An undead parakeet.
An army of radioactive boyfriends.
She told me that she had eleven daddies
when she was little,
but that her real daddy
was moving back home . . .
even though he accidentally killed a turtle.
She was drawing a green lightning bolt
when I was drawing a map to the treasure.
“But that’s a secret I’m not supposed to tell,”
she said, shaking her green crayon at me.
We didn’t see each other for years.
She was exploding when I was driving.
She was developing a reputation when I was an anarchist.
She was combing her hair when I was asleep.
She was mentioned when I was listening.
And though I still haven’t seen her
since she lived down the street,
I dreamed of her last night:
She was quietly raising her daughter,
while I was a forensic detective,
reprimanded by the chief for outlining
the bodies with green chalk
instead of the approved tombstone white.
And in that Silly-Putty place
between dream and daylight,
I was in love with her for a moment.
Though she never recognized me
as she searched for quarters in her purse,
I was lurching toward her
from an entirely different world.