#89 As Empty

by Selu Davis

You will wake up in the morning to the dark of 6AM, wait for the sunlight to pipe itself in between the slats of the blinds. You will pinch the layer of fat on your thighs until your thumb joint aches. There will be a red mark that turns to blue. It will match the other bruises and you will note the symmetry.

Bare feet on the floor, you will step with glee to the mirror and the scale. There will be just enough light to see your flab, flaps of skin ruined by tracks of stretch marks. You will cup your breasts, useless but getting smaller. You will grab for your collarbone with both hands craned over your head, swooping down. The skin will be pink from your fingers, pads tip-toeing over bones jutting out. You will arrange yourself on the scale. You will reset it exactly six times before you believe the number.

You will cross the carpet to the drawer of your supplies: tongue presser, washcloths, mouthwash, and your little black book, a bookie’s ledger filled with printed dates and numbers. You will write in today’s weight, exacting because if you make a mistake you will spend the next week recopying the entire book. You will remember all of your mistakes. You will want to run. The Nikes are always last. At the door, you will smile at the room, vacant and clean—precise in its care. You will be that room. You will be that empty.

9 comments:

Jason Reed said...

I like it. Good job!

Shona Snowden said...

Precise and beautiful.

Christine Ahern said...

Very powerful images.fnserv

pegjet said...

strong, confident writing.

Anonymous said...

Powerful and painfully realistic. Just had a niece go through the same thing. Nicely done.

P. Frey

JRVogt said...

Great piece! Captures this empty lifestyle incredibly well. Strong details drive it home.

Douglas Campbell said...

This is terrific. Smooth prose, great details, painful content. Well done!

Laura Manning said...

Stunning and deliberate! I was directed here by Lisa and she's right that this is one of the best short shorts that she's read.

DeAnne Musiel said...

Powerful, tight, and emotional. Nice job, Bob.