Palm Springs

Like everything about that marriage, it was

a dare. So after an American adolescence of body-

hate, five therapists, one Fat Is a Feminist Issue

encounter group (honey, it is), and a couple

of beers, we checked into a nudist hotel. Desert

warmth, high concrete walls, and I was probably

freshly waxed. Spent a poolside hour not staring

but quickly gauging. A decade at least: that’s

how much younger we were than the rest.

Even if I still cruelly spurned my homely

conveyance (and I did), I was fittest by far.

Strolling along the agave paths, milkweed

blossoms, smoketrees, we laughed about the last

therapist, who’d advised us to love ourselves.

The fights had frightened her. In the restaurant

the waiters wore only aprons. I placed the napkin

not on my lap but beneath my ass. We ordered

steak, which we liked black and blue. But this

was one of many good times. Back in the room

(rustic cabin décor) he put on his boxers and

I grabbed the robe. We read late into the night,

though the light was dim, and rose early to head out.

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