Silence Atop Monte Sano

It begins in boredom
piling into Suzanne and Kris's cars
one a chase through Huntsville's mountains
winding and circling up and down
the skyline occasionally eruption into view
from the weave of trees
teasing us with its fickleness
prompting the search to continue
spiraling higher
And for not the first time that evening
I feel so outside this circle of friends
having no school band experience to speak of
no tales to relate in hopes of forging bonds between us
my silence only widens the gap
and when I speak
the words seem meaningless
possibly absurd and naive
reminding me how I felt
when I met Kris, Dave, Ted, and John
weeks ago in Birmingham
a sudden memory of a Rush lyric
about long-awaited friends and strangers
tears into me, causing guilt for ever expecting
anything from those around me
it is near that moment when our tiny caravan
stops at the top of Monte Sano
the stars lying naked before us and within minutes
none of us are speaking
not Stephanie at my head
or Jen at my feet
and perhaps there is a bond in that silence
that I am not aware of
which makes it all the more painful, and ironic
that I feel at that moment that I should be saying something
listening to Yvette and Jenny giggle
Why am I here?
with with these people I wish so desperately to call my friends
what am I doing to feel so foolish
what are we, all of us
thinking at that exact second
atop Monte Sano
underneath the infinite solar fires

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