Kate Sullivan

The Emmy Rose

I am blinded by flashes of light, walls of water. The air is thick with the strain of engines, sirens, shouting, sparks, and the small pops of electricity. We watch desperately the last flickerings of light and then …  a booming explosion.  As if in a silent film, I see us flying in black and white slow motion, rising, rising…momentarily weightless…then falling, falling, faces contorted in a kinetoscope of silent screams, limbs spread wide in suspended supplication. And now I can hear the slapping sound of your arms, your legs, your sharp cries dying into the darkness.

Then I lose you, the three of you, my dear, wild friends.

I gird myself for the fight against the coming torment.  The cold hits with a viciousness I have only dreamt about on sleepless nights.  Darkness now. Quiet. I am alone now. My limbs become heavy, waving like the large inflated balloon characters in the St. Peter’s Fiesta Parade. I look up, searching for the light, and wonder why it is below me. I try to yell but I can no longer hear my voice.  I close my eyes, or are they closed already?  I think of the smell of Virgilio’s fresh bread, of walking along The Boulevard, of the glory of the lighthouse on Eastern Point, and of you, my darling Emmy Rose, and all our lovemaking, frantic at first, then growing gentler and more peaceful with each passing year.  I think of every sunrise and sunset on Rocky Neck and how we would swear that each one was the best ever. But the regrets also float around me, the sorrows of failure. I feel the inescapable grip and swirl of unnamed sins. The maddening losses twist, like strips of kelp, encircling my arms and legs, dragging me deeper, deeper.  But then a dome of brilliant constellations appears in the darkness and I feel a joy rising in me.  The cold fades into warmth and comfort.  I am suddenly overwhelmed by a euphoria deeper than I have ever known in life.  How can this be, so separated from the light?

THE GLOUCESTER DAILY TIMES, November 20, 2020 The Coast Guard suspended their search for the crew of the Emmy Rose at 5:22 p.m. Tuesday.  All four fisherman on board are lost at sea and presumed dead.

Kate Sullivan likes to play around with words, music, and pictures. She has written and illustrated children’s books, sung chansons at NYC Mme Tussaud’s Wax Museum, and her fugue-ish ‘Fugitum est’ was performed at Carnegie Hall by The Kremlin Chamber Orchestra as part of their tribute to Mozart. She also likes to paint ostriches and plays the musical saw to impress people. Her work has appeared in Rush Literary Magazine, North of Boston, and Writers.com. Find out more about Kate here: www.sullyarts.com