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Lisa Boylan  Sam Flute

scream. I have a strong tidal pull to Sam Flute and a very particular time and place, imbedded in the swampy marshlands of Washington D.C. and the Chesapeake. Rising and ebbing tides are caused by the gravitational attraction of the sun and moon occurring unequally on different parts of the earth. The mythology of Sam Flute began in eighth grade when he hosted a pool party for our entire class at his house in Georgetown. I remember everyone being a lot cooler and more in touch with their effect than I was. Sam was nice, he greeted me and said he was glad I came. We went on to high school together, but he dropped out in tenth grade. There was trouble; I didn’t know the full story. My friend Holly and I noticed him one day before he dropped out. After he left school, he looked up Holly and asked her out. Holly was the only one of us that could garner a date. The suburban Jewish girl who lived in a Tara reproduction and drove her own blue Camero. For Sam’s sixteenth birthday, Holly wanted to do something special for him so she got me to buy him a bottle of Jack Daniel’s. In that sad way of geeky girls with no chance of a boyfriend, I delighted in the collusion of the act. It was like a secret martyr mission, hiding the chalice of Jack in my vestments, all for Sam. The fact that Sam liked whiskey—the down and dirty real stuff, the elixir, firewater—only underscored how much more intense he was than the watered-down boys we were used to. Sam was the Bad Boy who scaled the latticework on Holly’s house, penetrated her bedroom—a princess lair replete with canopy bed, eyelet shams, and ruffled curtains—and got her in trouble with her parents. She said, “Sam knows more about our bodies than we do. His father is a doctor. He knows things, Alice.” We tittered. She said, “He understands me. I told him my mother is a bitch and he said ‘It’s because she’s manic depressive.’ Isn’t that amazing that he would know that?” She hid from her mother at my house, where Sam picked her up. Again, I was an aide-de-camp, a spy, an accomplice. Sam smiled at me. Holly told me he said I was pretty. One night Holly called me, breathless and urgent, with plans for a covert night mission. She said that Sam asked her to come pick him up

Sam Flute  
Sam Flute  

Story I wrote about Tucumcari in an anthology of DC women's writers.