Before by Tara Isabel Zambrano

photo of yellow subway car in station

“Subway” (image via Flickr user Daniel Foster)

Sometimes, Neil and I’d meet for lunch in a small Indian restaurant that served astonishingly delicious lamb curry with rice crepes. The waiter was a tall Sikh who often gave us privacy and a discount. We’d sit outside and watch the clouds swirl in the sky, our finger tips stained with tomato-turmeric sauce. On our way back, the wind would blow a thin swoop of hair on our faces when we’d run all the way to the railway station and look for an empty car. Then we’d kiss and fuck as the train rushed past platforms and crowds watching us from a distance like a movie they’d want to be in. Just before our stop, we’d kiss goodbye and disappear in messy subways. It was before either of us was married or hesitant. It was before my eyes would hurt watching a world of logic and numbers dance on an oscilloscope. They’d resemble a train signal, a swirling cloud of color. It was before I knew about waiting.

Tara Isabel Zambrano moved from India to the United States two decades ago. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Moon City Review, Juked, Storm Cellar, Menacing Hedge, and others. She is a Fiction Reader for The Tishman Review and is an Electrical Engineer by profession.