I keep thinking about this one time in Florence with your mom. The three of us were walking home from the little grocery store across the street where you bought my brown leather notebook. We were heading to the first apartment, the one with the pretty curtains. I remember we had to push them aside, deep pink, silky, billowing, to open the windows and let in the summer air.
You held the two bags of groceries, never letting us carry anything you couldn’t. The sun sat low in the sky, bathing you in golden light. Your eyes always changed color at this time of day. They turned the shade of blue that stabs. Usually, especially at night, they reminded me of the sea, soft and beckoning.
We were a few feet away when we heard the music. It was coming from the small chapel where they held opera performances every evening, the one we would always pass during the day. You would say, “Let me take you,” and I would smile.
She stopped in front of the wooden doors, pressing her ear to the crack between them. She motioned with her hand for us to do the same. I watched as she closed her eyes, mouthing the Italian words until they started to escape her lips in whispers. I imagined this was how she once sang you lullabies when you were still afraid of the dark, and it was time to turn the lights off.
She sighed when the song ended, opening her eyes and stepping slowly away from the doors. She brought her hand to her heart and said something about how she’s always loved that song.
I said something about how it was beautiful, and it was, but more than anything, I was talking about her.
Loretta Rodriguez is a senior English and Chinese double major. She has spent the past year studying abroad in China and Denmark. Her fourth year as a Trinity student has been hectic and full of surprises, but she is looking forward to graduation in Spring 2020. She hopes to pursue a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing.