I sit with the coffee. This is my first meeting with it; my first glimpse of a ghost I see every day. The white iron mesh table has spots of rust on it. Some of them have been picked at, and now possess form and dimension. They look like other things, which is what we all wanted all along.
What’s you plan today then?’ He busies himself in the corner, wiping espresso cups with a damp blue cloth.
‘I don’t know, Gianni. I think’ – I pause, and look over my shoulder at it – ‘I think I might have to give it a rest.’ I finger the little round cup with yellow nails.
Gianni walks over with the cup. Flaring nostrils set the tone. I pull the cup towards me.
‘Cats. Restaurants. Your girlfriend’s parents. You have to give this a rest, Paulie. No boat can make it.’
What is so hard about knowing the truth?
Later on, I sit in the boat. I just bob there, with men in rolled shirts and deck shoes sat on the fence made of logs. As sailing boats whisper by, I watch its hills. In any light, it’s only a hill. At dark it disappears, like all the other islands. When I get there, I’ll disappear too.