The glass broke in the kitchen. It sprayed, rushed into bits of broken reflection. The old lady watched me her stumpy demeanor interrogated my awkwardness. I lifted up the lid, a shard of myself stuck out of the sugar pot. It gleamed in the way introverts grow, chiseled to a point.
I could feel the pieces stare up at me. They begged to be rescued below the bark of the Matriarch. She grunted telling me to leave the broken children. She said they’d hurt me, that they’re just ‘begging for air’. Her berating bit into the back of my head. I continued to help the children.
I picked them up, as softly as a soldier could. Lying in my hands with frightening intensity, they shed sugary tears. While the world stopped for that pinnacle, that moment. I watched a string of life, snake out of my finger. It wound its way on to my blunt arms, desperate.
I had to hold the children. The Mountain Mother left, carving up ripples for me to chew on. That last lightning look she gave me had no heart or tender expression. I did not mind, nor care when the weeping filled my ears. Burnt, black skin smeared me. It gave me a smile and said that nothing would turn away.
There’s a smile that slowly seeps into your face. Some say it’s benevolent spirits around you. They warm your moments, and keep a hand over your fragile eyes. It rippled into the young heads around me. They smiled collective as a chorus.
I put my hands to my face, scraping off the rubbery emotion. The shards stuck into them. My moans dribbled into the sugar, caking the face of the splintered scene. My patience hung like a rigid spoon, about to pierce the frozen film of milk. It dangled above the splayed stories, and severed memories.
I drank my coffee, ending with a slurp. I pressed it down on the desk. It stained the surface. I left it there, the ring searing the skin.
It tore the air like paper.