Body and Mind
The first time he calls the talk line, it’s because he wants to die. Whatever has happened in his brain has made him a stranger to himself.
Try to avoid symbolism and metaphors, and leave fate out of it, too. Fate was not preparing you for this loss when you were an eight-year-old farm girl and held that stillborn piglet for hours in the barn.
He has developed a shorthand response to my entreaties: Landfill, he hisses, and he walks away.
Jessica and I periodically take walks together. Her small dog, Ortiz, sometimes joins us. He spends his days eating shoes, peeing on the carpet, and jumping the backyard fence. But no matter where we go, I notice that he always knows the way home.
Like the other fishermen, I am waiting to have the day’s catch processed and flash-frozen for transport back to the Lower 48. A recent vasectomy makes me stand in line at a cant. I shift my weight to ease the dull throb in my groin.