“i thought i’d try something special,” he says.
“should i close my eyes?” she asks playfully, but instead of answering, he spins her around so she faces away from him, keeping his hand on her waist.
“watch,” he whispers in her ear.
the striped canvas sides of the tent stiffen, the soft surface hardening as the fabric changes to paper. words appear over the walls, typeset letters overlapping handwritten text. she can make out snatches of shakespearean sonnets and fragments of hymns to greek goddesses as the poetry fills the tent. it covers the walls and the ceiling and spreads out over the floor.
and then the tent begins to open, the paper folding and tearing. the black stripes stretch out into empty space as their white counterparts brighten, reaching upward and breaking apart into branches.
“do you like it?” he asks, once the movement settles and they stand within a darkened forest of softly glowing, poem covered trees.
she can only nod.
he reluctantly releases her, following as she walks through the trees, reading bits of verse on branches and trunks.