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Horse made of glass - Part 3
by Katerina Charisi
2017-06-04 12:21:49
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The house finally fell in silence and she paced around the small kitchen, opening the fridge’s door and the cabinet’s door, taking everything out again and counting, trying to think of something nice to cook for the next day. Something nice. Like taking everything out and staring at them would transform them into something else. Would fill the boxes and the empty shelves and she would have choices.

hose01_400She wanted to call her mother and tell her all about her life but she didn’t. She didn’t because when her mother would pick up the phone she would tell her “I’m fine. Everything’s fine”. It was never fine. There were just drops of fine in an ocean of unhappiness and damn she was tired. She knew that some people could take more than she could and she knew that some others could take less, but she also knew that she’d reached that point where she couldn’t take no more.

She wanted to call and tell her mother she couldn’t do this anymore but didn’t know what else to do, and her mother would tell her “well, come back home”, but home was a word long forgotten for her and that was not what she needed to hear.

She wanted to tell her that she had done this once already, that she had to pull out all of her strength and ripped out her heart to leave him and she would never have such strength to do it again.

She wanted to tell her that she had gone back home and nothing had changed, and when a couple of months later she felt something alive in her tummy she had to let him back in her life. “For the kid”, she had said. And she remembered telling him “don’t you ever dare make a promise to this kid that you ain’t going to keep” and he had laughed holding the boy wrapped in a tiny wool blanket, a wrinkled faced newborn with tiny clenched fists punching the air and she said “don’t you laugh damn it, I’m dead serious. I don’t care about any of your lies and fake promises, I don’t care how many more times you’re going to break my heart, but don’t you dare hurt this boy’s feelings or I’ll kill you.” And he had narrowed his eyes and stared at her and stared back at him, but her eyes slipped to the floor and she knew she had just lost another battle.

She wanted to tell her mother all of these things but never touched the phone for her mother would never understand the pain. She couldn’t leave him. She wouldn’t find peace in her soul in a thousand years. He would be everywhere; in every corner and every street, in every song and every sunset. He would be in the shining stars and in every drop of rain. He would be in the trees and in every living thing. He was every word ever said and every word never said; he was a world by himself.

And she counted the boy’s Novembers and she counted the little one’s Julys and she counted the years she’d been running away, and the years were too many for someone to keep running away going nowhere.

Was everything her fault? What of all had she caused? What of all was her mistake for letting it happen?

She tiptoed to the porch and lit a cigarette and sat on the sofa and smoked. She listened to the birds somewhere deeper in the woods and in the back of the house occasional moans and springs rattling and she felt time stretching for blowing out smoke and the cigarette wasn’t ending. She tried to whistle to the birds and one of them whistled back or maybe she thought it did and she remembered the first time she’d heard or noticed the strange birds singing at nights, almost twelve years ago.

She remembered a purple and pink sky ready to lighten as she had waked before dawn, and she was sitting at the very same sofa and listened to the birds singing and she had smiled. A few days later they went to his parents for dinner and all the family was there. His brother with his wife and his sister with her husband and his parents, all around the table, laughing and talking for things she didn’t care and people she never met. And she had tried to make him give her a little attention for she was sitting all silent playing with her food and she tried to describe the bird’s song and whistled funnily. He looked at her and she had forgotten they were all there too, choking their laughter, and when they finally laughed all together with her, she felt her face turning red and the blood in her veins boiling hot.

He laughed so hard he started coughing, and said “well I can’t tell ya what that bird might be, and why would it matter anyhow, it could be a nightingale or it could be anything else, birds are worth only when they steam in your plate”. New laughter came from the family and she sank in her chair, feeling the way they all separated themselves from her and never asked anything again about birds.

She looked at the book lying in the floor, the one he had thrown and stomped with his foot earlier while pressing hard on his cheek and red eyed like a wounded animal he paced up and down in the house and outside without knowing what to do to ease the pain in his mouth. He’d sat on the hardcover book she had left on the sofa and grabbed it and tossed on the floor, yelling at her “get that fuckin’ thing off the damn sofa, there’s no place for a man in pain to sit with your damn stupid books”.

She put the butt in a plastic cup filled with water that they kept on the small table for ashtray and it hissed and then took the book in her hands. She stroked the cover and tried to straighten the pages, then she left it on the sofa and she tiptoed back in the house and went out again to get the book.

She went to check on the boys and kneeled on the floor and watched them sleeping. She looked at the little one’s tiny chest rising and falling, his head sunk in his thin pillow, sheet tangled in his legs. She stroked his cheek and then watched the boy turning and twisting, squeezing his own pillow tight. She put her hand softly on his bony chest and he sighed and turned his back to her in his sleep.

She stood up and went to her bedroom and stood for a moment and watched the man sleeping on the bed, wondering who he was or if she had ever really met him. She wanted to go back to the boys and put her pillow on the floor and sleep next to them, listening to their soft breathings, but she knew she had to stay in her bed. She moved her body as far as she could, away from the familiar but unknown shape next to her and put the book under her pillow. When she felt her ribs pressing against the bed’s frames she knew there was no more space so she pulled the blanket to her chin and closed her eyes.


Horse made of glass – Part 1 -Part 2 -Part 3 - Part 4 - Part 5 - Part 6Part 7 -


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