Geoffrey sneezes on my face as I bend to give him the kiss he’d pleaded for. My sassy four-year-old, my fourth child, has always been demanding of my…Fight for Me by L.T. Ward
DownDown seven stepsSeven depths of dreamto flypapered hallswhere you meetthe man with the flagonHe fills vials of venomOne you must drinkfor it will take youthrough Mandelbrot sets of madnessUp, up, and throughto the white dwarfof bright morning
This, by K-Ming Chang, in The Jellyfish Review.
I cut my mother’s hair every month since her hands went wild. They’re rabid, boomeranging around the room, returning every touch twice as hard, slapping her face when she’s asleep, ambushing mosquitoes, crawling under the sofa like rodents. I cut her hair shorter in the front than in the back. She likes asymmetry, the unevenness of things. She claims that’s why she fell in love with my father. He had one eye that was double-lidded and one that was single-lidded, one smaller than the other, which my mother called long-feng yan. Dragon-phoenix eyes. A sign of good luck. Eyes like coins, like currency, spending themselves empty. Every month, I spray my mother’s hair from the roots to the tips, trace the cowlick on her scalp, trim away the bleached-brittle ends. Unlike her, I prefer symmetry. I cut my own hair in a bob so abrupt that my friends call me…
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It began when I wanted him to have a two hundred dollar rocking horse. Or, when she stopped her crying as I sang to her about that bear that went over the mountain. The piggybacks to bed, the too-long stories, the artful tickling. My ignorance, my wilfulness, my shame.
This is wee, the hour. I play coy with sleep, thinking that if I ignore it and feign that I am fighting it, it will engulf me out of spite. But no. Its navigator plies me with pages from afternoon fades, jukes in studied loops. Sheep have gone out of style, I think.
I had an ambulance ride last night, due to a sudden heart issue. It turned out to be a wise decision, because I had to be cardioverted electronically. Before that, they told me they were going to inject a drug that would stop my heart, "make me feel very bad", and would then restore it... Continue Reading →