Wasps Don’t Sting Barrels

A memory.

That red buzzer hovering ahead wants to sting the life out of me. At first there’s just one of them, just one between the wooden porch beams stained in rings like pruned tea leaves and the unsettling white door that provides the newest form of nonpermanent shelter, where I’ve lived all my life.

I lock my hand to my elbow. My moves, self-taught through uniform reenactments of Jackie Chan movies, tried and proven on others, friendships permitting, makes me feel like I can roll through the wasps like barrels. This ancient technology of the fulcrum, and with it my version of karate, will always be with me, as will my scarred ego.

I’m certain that I got inside, eventually.