I put on my coat and think about death

Written by Giovanna Lenski


In the left pocket my thumb always finds the rubbed ridges of a faded orange shell. The one I plucked from the sand when we went to the beach together for the first time. On our walk over you told me that you hated the beach, that you hated getting sand in your shoes. Little did you know, I had in my closet a secret collection of jars filled with all the leftover sand I’d find in my shoes when I got home.


And I found out my cat died. And I forgot to pack the sandwiches. And I kicked sand in the picnic basket.


So you overate overripe raspberries while I watched the juice drip down your chin like blood. It stained your fingers red,

the kind of red you see on the sidewalk beneath a flattened rat carcass. I wish you’d stepped on me when we were lying on the pier. I’d be the giant rat and you’d be the giant foot crushing me into the concrete.


And when I pull out that shell from my pocket all I see is the fat face of my dumb dead cat.


Contact Giovanna by email at lenski.giovanna@gmail.com