I crack an egg into a pan and think about this: Once an iron bar went through a man’s brain. I learned about this in school. The injury affected his frontal lobe only, the area responsible for personality.
I drop the cracked shell onto a paper towel and think about this: The man was fine otherwise, but he acted so different from his usual self (swearing and whatnot) that even his own family didn’t recognize him. The man was still alive but was basically someone else.
I fold the paper towel over the egg and crush it while I think about this: A person got to be two people in one lifetime.
I salt my eggs, then I salt them some more as I think about this: I wonder if the man was aware he had changed. If he knew on some level that he used to be different. Or whether he thought he was just himself.
The yolk is a bleeding sun on my plate as I carry it to the table and think about this: I guess I don’t have much in common with that man, except when I feel like I’m someone else. Like the way I feel every time I make eggs. Like the eggs flip a switch and voila, I’m my mother. I’m a sucker for salt just like she was, I’m loving eggs and crushing their shells. I’m in my skin but it’s also her skin. I’m in our skin together.
The yolk is a palette of paint for my bread, and I dip and sweep while I think about this: she only made eggs on her good days.
I don’t know what happened to that poor man, that lucky man. I guess eventually his second self died. I think about this and also my mother, who never seemed to remember the days without eggs. Except for one morning when her eggs grew cold and she said she was sorry for the times she was gone. I said, You weren’t gone. She said, You know what I mean.
I wipe the last remnants of yolk with my bread and think about this: I wonder if she wished she could break the switch. Smash the electrical like a bar through the brain.
My plate is a clean canvas as I bring it to the sink and think about this: the sun is gone, my mother is gone, but I can make eggs tomorrow.
Andrea Lynn Koohi is a writer from Toronto, Canada. Her recent work appears or is forthcoming in Best Microfiction 2022, Bath Flash Fiction Anthology 2022, filling Station, Pithead Chapel, Lost Balloon, Whale Road Review, Flash Frog Magazine and others.