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  • In the spring, he led me into the garden, lifted up an overturned clay pot, and showed me where the yellow-spotted newts lived.
    Then we went to the studio, made Easter bonnets for the dozen chicks he and Keith were raising.

    In the summer, we climbed up the steep trails to swim in Pink Lake.
    I collected shards of mica along the way. He filled his pockets with brittle rainbows, which I forgot to take home.

    I didn't understand about men who love men. I just loved him. I begged my mother to marry him. I didn't understand that as far as our hearts were concerned, he was already my father.

    In the fall, he helped me core and slice apples, then taught me to pinch the crust on the pies.
    We played in our clubhouse, stocked with a broken microphone and dyed ostrich feathers. I pretended to be a princess who was also a rockstar.

    In the winter, he carved toboggan routes down the snowy side of the mountain. We careened under artfully-bowed saplings and crashed laughing into the log walls of the house.
    After dinner, we danced to Thriller until I was exhausted. He tucked me safe into the wool blankets of my bunkbed.
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