( X ) Morning. Dark malt washing over the room. Seeping through seams like sticky smoke. Advancing over the sill. Across the floor and mattress. Threatening to pin her here again.
( X ) A second later. Her eyes redact, bury themselves. The weight of her lids heavy as padded vests. Heavier. Like mounds of earth flung over a scarred casket.
( X ) A second later. The timer in her head. Already clicking. If she doesn’t move soon, get up, she never will.
( X ) Two Junes ago. The therapist. His squishy gym bag head. Gummy worm lips cracked and tipped with pin dot spittle. Not even bothering to shield his erection behind the desk. Dull thud thud thud of rubber on wood. A question for the ages. A question for no one.
( X ) June after that. Gran visits. Her eyes periwinkle eggs floating in milk soup. Always seated, hands lapped. Knitting to fill. A tic on the brow. Saying, You know, rape isn’t a word one throws around lightly.
( X ) This June. Her mother, lost in another scattered high. Swaying like a moray underwater. Ash floating around the room from the toppled urn. The flakes of her father swimming in glare, lighter than when he’d been alive.
( X ) Now. Her hand. Cleaved from her arm. Reaching on its own. Knocking over an empty pill container. Finding the imaginary knife. Cutting the bindings. Missing skin. Ankles next.