we sat on the sand at cannon beach,

sharing an ice cream cone because

“you weren't hungry.” ahead, the

sun gasped its last ochre breath

before plunging into the abyss

to cool off. the huge rock jutting

out of the ground never looked

like a cannonball to me; instead,

it resembled the stone miter

of a long-buried pope statue—

the sphinx of rome. i told you

this; you said i was weird.

we held hands, yours caught cold

from raynaud's, ever icy despite

the weather. you liked it when

i rubbed your fingers between

my palms like i was lighting a fire.

like i was a boy scout.

but i never earned your badge.