Say you love me.

You call me at ten o'clock central time.

At that point, the boy and I are negotiating a vicious Texas storm. Crowding himself under a comforter on the sofa, the wind, hail and hate of the storm slams itself against the windows. It calls down the fireplace chimney making the flue sing.
I ask you to give me a moment and I tell him we may lose power, sending him on a search for a lantern, batteries and a can of Pringles. I try to hammer out a plan if the roof of the duck's coop should take wing tonight.
I come back to the call to find you frustrated.
You are sick and have been traveling for half the day to Salt Lake City. I can see your plum fanny pack lying across the fresh bedding of the business suite. You are coughing, and your sentences are punctuated with crying. You are full of fever when you to tell me that coming here was a mistake.

I agree, but I keep this to myself.

I suggest you take a hot bath, crawl under the covers and fall asleep to Survivor.

You relate to me the fact that there is only a shower in the hotel room, and cry a little harder.

I am silent, you cry and quietly the beech tree comes down in the backyard.

You cry and I imagine the biopsy they took from my favorite of your breasts, sitting in the lab. The lights are off, and it waits in the dark, ready to dictate how well we all will sleep at night.