Summer Help

by Theresa Cartier

We started the day at seven, stuffing
ourselves with monstrous
blueberry muffins. Then he stretched
languidly and belched
looking pleased with himself
as always. Okay, slacker, he said,
let’s get to work.

You know your life’s
pretty sad when hanging drywall
is the best thing you’ve done in months.
So only someone who loves
life can make you giggle
and maybe believe in yourself during
ten hours of back-breaking labor
on a sweltering summer day.

We finished the job covered with grit,
trying to decide which of us
smelled worse as we pulled onto the freeway,
He floored the truck, stuck
his whole head out the window, wind
blowing dust off his hair, dark curls
swirling as we flew
like Icarus into the sun.