The cloying scent of lilacs hangs heady in the air as the sun fades to pastel streaks across the sky. Strewn on the grassy bank of Black Duck Creek, a faded plaid blanket lies abandoned. The last ruby drops in the concave of an overturned wine glass attract an industrious line of ants. They march with military precision, dipping down through the hollow, still just almost warm, where the memory of a solitary body still bows the blades of grass beneath.
Somewhere in the dusk a bird begins its goodnight song, the tune more mournful now, more wistful now. What does he know?
As the creek murmurs a path between weeds and rocks and under lush green lily pads, a flash of white snags on the tendril of a willow tree trailing in the current. Three hopeful lines of cursive start to run like tears.
Downstream, past a pair of muskrats frolicking in the shallows, far beyond where rainbow trout flap tails against the current, laying their progeny by thousands in depressions in the gravel, further still, the gently meandering east fork of Black Duck Creek abruptly unites with its more unruly west branch. Its ripples carry whispers of a lonesome silhouette, a solitary figure sat beneath a willow as the darkness of the night settles with the dew.
Stars wink into sight and the crescent moon begins its slow ascent, while promises of romance die unfulfilled in two defeated hearts.
I can’t stop thinking about you.
Do you feel the same?
Meet me under the willow on the west fork of the creek.
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