I reach the shore and shiver. Foamy waves sweep across sand in a song of eternal embrace. I bend to pool a mustard moon in my palms, my arms the colour of ash. I am swallowed whole by the sea, bones crush into diaphanous jelly preserving shells and stones. My seaweed skin hides a pearl below my belly button. A fisherman finds me tangled in his net, his knife grazing my legs, surrounded by silver tail fins. He cups my pearl, his beard tickling my chin, his voice my mother’s lullaby.
I reach the cliff and shiver. At the edge, I fold my knees and watch flowers sprout around me. Inside a pink hibiscus, a bee crawls out, playing a riddle. I do not know, I tell him again and again. A prayer that gets lost in the wind. A horn bellows and the sky breaks to unleash a flock of birds, their talons aimed at my eyes. My arms stretch wide while the bee settles on my crown. A feast of my innards, seasoned and garnished to its finest. A crow calls for my womb. It arrives on a platter making the others drool. His beak nudges the umbilical cord until it unravels, a snake brushing off the remnants of a dream.
I reach the room and shiver. The smell of disinfectant is in my clothes, my hair, under my nails. I hear the sound of a window being opened and cover my eyes from the blazing sun. A body wrapped in white studies me. She says I can leave if that’s what I want. Choice. The taste is unfamiliar, nudging me towards the window. The shivers have ceased completely. I walk into the light.
- M.S has poetry and fiction published here and there online. She thanks you for reading her work.