I can hear the bangs and blasts on the 4th of July. And the flashes of the celebration burst through the window, illuminating my room for moments.

Like anybody else, I’ve always enjoyed fireworks. I like sparklers and snakes and bottle rockets and roman candles and sparkling cones. I even like the smell of spent fireworks. And why not? With the exceptions of blowing up in a person’s face or blowing off some fingers – aside from the occasional, unfortunate accident – their sole purpose is to produce amusement and joy.

Yes. I enjoy fireworks. When the neighborhood sets them off on the 4th of July, I think for a moment about going to the window to see. I even think sometimes about stepping outside to watch. But it’s more comfortable sitting in my chair, away from the window, and thinking and briefly imagining the fun and the beauty and the joy of their fireworks.

Yes. Like most people, I’ve always enjoyed fireworks. If I happen to see them on TV, they’re very nice. I know they’re nice. But I never stand at my window to watch. I never step out on my porch to see. I only imagine what it must still be like.

I imagine. Sometimes I imagine myself going to the fireworks store just off the interstate highway. I’ve thought about stopping there and buying a pack of fireworks and driving to a secluded part of the lake at night and setting them off. It occurs to me sometimes that might be nice since I’ve always enjoyed fireworks. Sometimes I imagine giving myself that little bit of joy. And why not, since joy’s hard enough to come by?

I imagine that. But I never do it. I never do it though I drive by the fireworks place all the time. Sometimes I wonder if they’re open. I’m never sure. I never pull over to find out, though I drive right by. I guess it’s easier to just wonder.

I like to imagine and wonder. I like to imagine having a woman I could tell about liking fireworks. I like to wonder what it would be like having her. I like to imagine her coming to me to watch fireworks through my window on the 4th of July. Or maybe even stepping outside to watch them with me. I think fireworks would be a lot better with her.

I like to image telling her about how much I enjoy fireworks. I like to imagine her stopping by the fireworks store near the interstate to buy me……I mean, us…….a pack of fireworks to take to a secluded part of the lake at night. I like to imagine her doing something nice like that for me because she loves me that much. I like to imagine her knowing me well enough and loving me enough to want to surprise me with fireworks and that evening jaunt to the lake. I imagine that would feel lovely.

But I don’t have a woman. So I don’t have any fireworks to enjoy. And I don’t want to spoil what could be by giving fireworks to myself.

I don’t have a woman, so I’ll remain in my chair instead of at the window or outside when the neighbors set off their delightful fireworks for the holiday.

Yes. I enjoy fireworks. Just not enough to step over to the window to ever watch them without her, even though fireworks are about as pure and easy as joy can be.

No. I don’t have any fireworks and I won’t see any fireworks this year, even though they’re right outside my window. I won’t feel the joy of any fireworks, so, again, I’ll blame it on her.

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