To have survived my womb, the egg must have been recycled from some previous life. It was mottled like a chicken’s, constellated with birthmarks I had spent summers smothering with fleshy spray paint to sell at my mother’s stand; it wobbled like frogspawn, a palmful of jelly that I had been looking forward to since moving back, tadpoles bursting open with the magnolia.
‘Cimera ha?’ he said. And I almost cried to hear my language for the first time since I’d left home. Then he said, ‘Don’t bother replying, I won’t understand if you do. I looked up how to say it after we spoke last week. Just tell me how you are in English.’
They had not had sex in years, but this did not bother Marla. If she were to walk past the same brook every day and watch it ebb away, it would not strike her as a horror. Only sudden changes, extreme and violent, suggested horror. Hurricanes, droughts.
I Drive in Circles
Sometimes, when we first started dating, my girlfriend reminded me of my ex, especially when we were kissing, eyes closed. I now wonder if my girlfriend also thinks about our ex when she kisses me, and if she imagines our ex just as I imagine her. Then perhaps neither of us is really present and we are just our ex making out with herself, which would be a turn on for my girlfriend and me and also for our mutual ex, who is self-centered.
The somber ending is commentary on police states like Mexico and America, in which people—haunted by their mistakes, banned from finding work, losing their voting rights, become ghosts in their environments, and wind up, once again, chained to their pasts.
El Hombre del Costal
Juania Sueños tradujo esta historia al inglés, y esa versión se puede leer aquí. Se paseaba entre las mesas con su costal de lona como si anduviera en la plaza, esquivando a los que comían y mirando el piso en busca de sabe Dios que. Los clientes se mostraban sorprendidos, incomodos, y seguro les pareció […]
The Omari and the Pango
For centuries, a select group of “Sea Women” were plucked from their families to become deep sea divers of octopus, conch, and abalone. It was considered a high honor to become a Sea Woman, and they were also especially hardy, continuing to dive well into their eighties.
Black Girl Inside Outpatient
You know she knows that by “your coworker,” you really mean Annie, the head of HR, who assured you during the last meeting, the one where it was strongly recommended that you take some time off, that “there’s no shame in the occasional breakdown.”