Magnolias in May

Submitted into Contest #14 in response to: It's a literary fiction story about growing up.... view prompt

1 comment


I licked the stars and the moon from the sky like pancakes, the syrup oozing from my pores. I ripped my voice from the jagged wind. I promised I wouldn’t let go, but I did. 

There were too many ghosts crowding my mind, breathing against my windowpanes leaving snow angels without their wings. There were always crowds, always people walking away into murky shadows. 

I feel the open wounds of my angels, they tell me to smell the flowers and then blow out the candles. I am stuck between the light and dark, the back and forth making me nauseous. He was suppose to keep me safe as a child, but instead he brought me hell. I was only seven years old, I loved painting the windows and running around the trees before the sun could catch me. After that night, I didn’t play or paint anymore.

I was living with a man who was suppose to be my husband, instead he was just a roommate. I was falling deeper into the well, leaving dark circles and lies in my path. I left magnolias at the edge of our fence, fluttering in the winter breeze. To remind me of sweetness and death. I curled up with daggers burning my flesh, coffins lined up underneath the bed. I want to feel the sunlight on my neck, and scream at the treetops as they plie. And then, let all of that vitriol slide away from me.

In the midnight stars I could see the love bending like live wires. I wasn't capable of taking that chance. In school I covered myself in hoodies, and forgot the words and meanings of everything around me. So, I left and never went back. I spoke to birds as they landed on the hood of my mothers car, their musky scent so familiar. I believe one of them was my uncle who painted like the wind in reverse. Every color rising like a massacre. His last painting threw away the sunlight, left me in the folded corners trying to breathe again. 

I have left sadness in my wake, because it rises in me like a tornado and then  spins it’s way into other people’s lives. I left my roommate. I have gone back to my family, waiting for the corners to close up, and for hope to find it’s wings outstretched and nimble. My apology is disappearing, my heart is centuries old. I reach for the orange bottle and wait. 

November 08, 2019 04:22

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1 comment

Elliot Thomas
20:23 Sep 14, 2020

This hurts. I have such trouble encapsulating my pain and showing others in the same way. I think I see your pain. Do you still check these? Are you still there?


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