#87 A perfect carrot

by Lisa Agosti

“Whatcha doin, Mommy?” Lee’s words reverberate in my mind.

“Waiting for the dough to rise, baby.”

He stands there, quiet, calibrating his options. I can sense his legs bursting to hop but his eyes reluctant to divert from my hunched shoulders.

Ted is in the woods working his axe, its echo fills the void. Thud. Thud. I used to bring him lunch before Lee happened. Later in bed, I would trigger my body rehearsing those taut biceps on my crumpled lingerie, thick breaths swelling his checked shirt. Thud. Thud. Like a living pulse. Like my own heart, disobedient to my plead of resting its case.

“You shouldn’t be here, baby. Go play outside.”

He will build a snowman, he always does. His gelid cheeks rekindle in the crisp relentless snow. I wish Ted could see him, he would be so proud. Thud. Thud. The dough is puffing nicely underneath the tablecloth, just like my womb would have been protruding from my dress by now.

“Look, Mommy, my snowman it needs a nose!”

I walk to the fridge and pick the straightest carrot, pointy and orange, I want it to be as perfect as my very own son.

A dreadful stillness revives me. The woods conspire in keeping my secret. Ted is coming home, he will be joyful, foretasting the homemade bread, unsuspecting of Lee and my fancied realm. I must hurry. How silly must I look standing here, in my lace wedding dress, holding a carrot.

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

Can't get the picture of the woman in her wedding dress holding a carrot out of my head. Good job

Dino Parenti said...

You captured something truly haunting here. Really nice job.

Lisa Pellegrini said...

There is a genuine feeling of emptiness and longing here -- that sense of "what could have been." You did a great job capturing that!

Jonathan Riley said...

I agree with everyone else here. The image of a woman in a wedding dress holding a carrot is forever stuck in my brain. Awesome job there. And ditto on the haunting sense of longing. This one won't easily be forgotten.

Lisa Malabanan said...

It has a hint of passion mixed in with loss and regret. I love that the title ties in to the twist at the end.

Lisa Agosti said...

Thank you so much for posting your comments. It means so much to me, I'm thrilled. Lascaux contests are a great motivation booster, and fun too!

Neil said...

Starting to like flash fiction more and more. Well done Lisa