Still, some other life haunts me. The possibility of things I could’ve done better. The possibility of how I could have been better.
When your mother calls, you can’t account for the time. Surely you weren’t feeding and changing her the entire morning, but you can’t say exactly what happened, only that you’ve barely eaten or slept. You tell her you’ve noticed new lines around your eyes in the mirror and joke that the baby is already stretching out of her clothes. She tells you babies have a way of pocketing time, maybe in the folds of their tiny skin, or their clothes. Who can say?
Sharon Frame Gay
She’s nestled in the space between heartbeats, a ghost child who never grew up. We had such a short visit with her, the memory now tucked into boxes along with little sweaters, booties.
I’m exhausted and watch a woman slouching on the bench opposite me who is seated next to five small children dressed in colorful knit sweaters and stacked like a pile of books, one on top of the other. The smallest child, just a bundle in a yellow knit tumbles off the top as the bus slows and starts with a jerk. I catch the baby before she lands on the floor of the bus. The woman doesn’t react…
It has occurred to me, it is a recurring thought, even, that the brisket weighs the same as Lily. Nine pounds, three ounces.
Is this what perfect mothers do? Look like deranged, ecstatic Moonies who can’t seem to leave their kids alone? Is this what I signed up for?
We publish stories with strong narrative structure, great characters, interesting settings, beautiful language, and complicated themes. Have you written such a story? Read more about submitting your work here.