In The Swim
By Valerie Muriel Mckinley
Published: October 16, 2007
Updated: October 4, 2008

I was laughing then the tears came. It had started with an old photograph.
Id been clearing the attic all week you just fell out of an old book I thought Id lost, wearing nothing but a pair of maroon swimming trunks. Your long legs white and as skinny as draw threads, with puny muscles like knots in cotton but a grin to charm the birds from the trees. Straight black hair hung over your dark lashed left eye leaving the right one to twinkle alone into the lens of the camera that loved you, despite your obvious shortcomings.
You looked the typical sixties rebel, hair collar length, blue stubble pointed chin. A Lawrence Harvey look alike if ever there was one, quite a dish in fact.
You knew it too, the girls just adored you. It was like being married to a film star sometimes.
You never worried about having sand kicked in your face, that sort of behaviour had gone out with Victor Mature et al. The hungry look was in with the emerging Beatles and the late still great Buddy Holly. The Liverpool revolution had saved you. You were fashionable, you were in the swim. Lean mean and hungry the world at your feet, and for some reason you had chosen me to share it all with you. I was happy then, content in the perceived knowledge that you would make a great daddy and a wonderful husband. That our love was enduring and would survive anything.
Looking at the picture now through a blur of tears a rogue thought struck me, I had always been an avid Robert Stack fan! Why couldn't I have met someone who had looked like him? I never could stand Lawrence bloody Harvey anyhow!

I wondered vaguely what Freud would have made of that.