Small Talk

by Jessica Klimesh

Over dinner, I ask you what your favorite color is, and you say I hate small talk, ask me something else. So I say Why isn’t the opposite of small talk called big talk? You let me spend the night anyway, our first time together. When our bodies touch, I say Is this okay? You smile and put your naked finger to my naked lip and say Shh, none of those kinds of questions either. I’d tell you if it wasn’t.

This whatever-it-is-between-us goes on in uninterrupted, unquestioning waves. We discuss climate change and spy balloons and you wonder out loud if anyone really uses Peloton bikes or those endless swimming pools you see commercials for.

Are we exclusive? I’m afraid to ask.

It’s a few months later when you say it’s red, your favorite color. I’d forgotten that I’d even asked. You say it casually, as you’re prepping a mousetrap, after mice have been leaving droppings under your sink for weeks. You dab a globule of peanut butter into the trap, then change your mind. No, not red, you say. Blue.