God is a Girl (Excerpt 6)

Russian Women

They were in town for a month, staying in a dorm at St. Scholastica.

Johnny Mack discovered their presence through a friend of his.  John invited

some of them to come to Skyline on Monday night for their volleyball game.

They had a good little team, not very tall and not exceptionally talented

but fun to watch, scrappy and hardworking. Bodhi and Parker were hitters, John

passed and dug, Chris was the setter and Ricky, well, Ricky was the King of

Duluth.

Devin was the heart of the team, or at least liked to think so.  “Play like

there’s girls watching!” he exhorted them with a passionate grin, and they

played hard, combined style with effort and almost always won.  They played

with abandon and most of them played high, like surfers meditating on the

beach.

“Ra, sun god,” Bodhi would say, squinting up at the glorious sun.

“Jah,” agreed Parker, intoxicated by the beauty of his buzz, his life at

that moment, a thousand moments like it.  The gods beat down sweetly on the

sizzling, silky sand.

But tonight, tonight there were Russian chicks, fine ones, watching from

the deck at the Skyline Bowling and Lounge.  It was important to look good on

this night, imperative that they play well.  The lights were on.  Somehow an

audience turned the game into a performance.  Performance, hell, this was an

audition.

They had Russian names that were forgettable because they were

unfamiliar.  Olga, Inga, Svetlana, Igor, Jesus, he couldn’t keep them straight.  He

thought maybe he and his friends should re-name them, possibly number them,

but that was a silly, fleeting, weed-induced notion.  They were mostly innocent

and watched the game like they were watching TV.  The strong looking

blonde had some stripper-like qualities and was deeply sexy in a high school,

back seat way.  She looked at him with great indifference but that didn’t deter

him.  Sex between nations, bringing countries closer together through sweat and

orgasms, well, he was all for that.

That night they played as well as they ever had.  They pounded the other

team, whooped it up, drank it in.  The Russian girls sat on the deck, sipping their

American Cokes and applauding from time to time.  Collectively, they were shy, a

school of fish out of water.  The lights and action, the commotion, was

intimidating.  It was as if they were from another country.

Between games, Devin and his friends flirted shamelessly with these

imported cheerleaders.  They were invincible under the lights and the stars,

intoxicated by adrenaline, pheromones and weed.

And later that night, there were festivities at Parker’s house, a loosely

organized fraternity off campus, high on the East Hillside.  There were the

obligatory drinking games at the dining room table, bags of chips torn open and

spilling onto the kitchen floor.  Dave Matthews exploded from giant speakers that

dripped wax and shook the windows like dinosaurs walking.  American college

students and Russian women shared the communion of youth, summer, alcohol

and attraction.

Like a number of the guys at the party, he first focused his libido on

the pretty blonde with the tig old bitties.  That was literally a no-brainer.  But as

the night wore on, he didn’t receive any signals that she was interested.  He re-

focused his goals on something more reasonable, more attainable, more pure.

Freedom from desire.   Want what you have.

Devin went out and sat alone on the front porch.  He blew five small

clouds up at the summer moon.  He felt good inside.  He thanked God for

everything.  He was a believer.  He hoped he’d recognize her when he saw her

smile.  God was a girl, and someday she would be waiting right around the

corner.  He stood up and began walking toward the convenience store three

blocks away, started writing a song in his head.

 

daybreak summer (coda)

an explosion remains

on the horizon.

the misty city

lies sleeping.

it’s always been this way.

love shines down,

surrounds my tiny groove.

 

 

 Copyright Tim D.

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