June Bugs

"Yo, did you find my bible?"
"Oh man, no I didn't know I was looking for it."
Erik's hungover steps are heavy as he petters around the barn, lifting up blankets and pillows as if one of us had been flipping casually thru Proverbs on the couch. Colton hangs on the open, front door frame. I sip on yesterday's coffee in the kitchen as we both watch Erik fruitlessly scan the cluttered Yacht Club. "Probably threw it out, bunch of hippies." He starts his chatter. Colton smiles, "Ah, nah, come on." I hop on the counter and watch the entertainment. "What?" Erik says, talking to Colton but loud enough to be everyones alarm clock. "You think they believe in God around here? Bunch a fucking atheists. They believe in fucking sticks & leaves." I nearly choke on my coffee. Colton breaks in to laughter as Erik mumbles something about being a June bug in his past life. I lean my head back against the cabinet and laugh to myself. Andrew Martin's advice from the weekend prior crosses my fuzzy train of thought: 'Everyone thinks they are the star of the movie--even the side characters...they can surprise you." Having my childhood buddies from Jersey with us on the mountain for the collective Gemini Birthday bash in the woods is a real life testament to this short story writing tip. From Emmy's hilarious, full-body reenactment of highlights from the night, told on her school bus home the morning after, to Iris' mild recollection of her late night rap entitled, "Randy's Candy", all while sporting a twelve pack box on her head, to the impromptu fencing bout on our road just before the summer heat settled on us. I am surrounded by the richest characters, each one deeply immersed in the elaborate details of their own stories. Erik finds his bible on the living room bookshelf. "My get outta jail free card," he says as he tosses the bible on his dash, convinced that God will be enough of a common denominator with any cop. I watch as those bright yellow jersey plates take off down the branch, our stories going with them, no where near over.