by Mercedes Lawry
On the bedroom wall, a window, curtained in pale green. He is in the bed and can only see a thin slice of sky. The sky is sometimes a soft blue, sometimes sketched with clouds or muddy gray. Rarely, at night, a star will be visible in the slice. The air in the room is heavy with stink. He is unaware of the stink. When she enters the room, she is comforted by it. She does not enter often. At times she stands outside in the yard facing the window. She cannot see him, just the pale green curtains which never move because the window is never open. She’d chosen the green curtains years ago when she loved the man who is dying. He knows he is dying but does not know she no longer loves him. She is not sure where the love went. Perhaps buried in the yard beneath the hydrangea which he never liked because it reminded him of his mother who was cruel. She should have let him remove the hydrangea. It was such a small thing.
MERCEDES LAWRY’s fiction appears in Gravel, Blotterature, Cleaver, Gambling the Aisle and Thrice Fiction. She was a semi-finalist in the Best Small Fictions 2016. Her poetry is published in journals such as Poetry, Nimrod, Prairie Schooner and others. Her chapbook, In the Early Garden With Reason won the 2018 WaterSedge Poetry Chapbook Contest, judged by Molly Peacock and is available on Amazon. Additionally, Lawry has published stories and poems for children.