I was going through this phase where I dressed like Inspector Gadget. I don’t remember why. I wore fingerless gloves and an oversized trenchcoat I bought at a thrift store, and a hat that I thought looked like a fedora but was closer to the wide-brimmed black church hats Amish men wear on Sundays. It was an autumn look, but we were out walking in what had to have been November or December. The night was clear and cold as one of those hollow-center ice cubes we would get in our sodas at the diner, and my coat was nowhere near warm enough.

We walked to a field we loved, a blank stretch of grass and overgrowth forgotten by the planned developments that encircled it. In the center, a cement platform would be bathed blue by the tiny frozen moon.

I’m switching tenses and I can tell, but it’s hard to know how to describe this moment. Even when it happened, it felt out of time.

The main thing I remember is standing with you under the streetlight, which cut a circle of orange into the night and made the pavement look hallucinogenic and hard to focus on. Your arms were around me and my hands were inside of your jacket, pressed to the warmth of your ribs.

I remember thinking at the time that the moment would last forever. That somewhere in time, you would always be wrapped around me in a circle of light on a cold winter night.