by James Sullivan
September heat endures the classroom’s rotating fan. Sticky warmth travels the room in coiling currents, slicking pupils’ skin against uniforms. They are bored. The teacher’s entreaties blow about as steam: Learn while you can. Don’t spend your days goofing around. Study hard and become an admirable adult! Even with most of her skin sealed inside woolen navy blue, her deep tan rises above the horizon of her neckline, its glow telling the truth of her summer vacation: saltwater splashed against lips, countless chilled Orion beers, sea breeze lifting her hair, schooling out the window, washed away like sand.
James Sullivan would rather be at the beach, but for now he writes stories and essays that have appeared or are forthcoming in publications such as Third Coast, Fourth Genre, Fourteen Hills, X-R-A-Y, and Hobart. Connect on Twitter @jfsullivan4th