you and me – POSTCARD #17
I’ve carried this card around with me in my diary for weeks. It’s so haunting and beautiful and I’m not sure if the artist, Emma Lindsay, is the sender of the postcard but I looked her up anyway. Pretty amazing stuff. Thank you for this one!
A cat spilt milk on this life
Mama, I wanna kitty!
She tucks a stray piece of hair behind her ear as the autumn wind blows dead leaves around their yard.
Alice, we’ve talked about this. You have Bluebell.
The Budgerigar squawks in its cage on cue.
I hate him! I wanna kitty!
The wail is hysterical and she picks her up but Alice wriggles and twists violently. She tries to quell her revulsion as one of the impetigo blisters on her child’s face erupts onto her throat.
Calm down, Alice!
She sits her wailing child on the bench and washes her hands and neck with anti-bacterial wash before applying more cream to Alice’s school sores.
His voice behind them is amiable as ever. What’s wrong with my Pumpkin?
I hate Mama!
It happens the way it always does. He laughs. Soothes. She enters their bedroom while he murmurs that yes, Mama is a meany, sometimes.
She opens the bottle and shakes two pills into her palm. Then another. She lies on the bed and closes her eyes, until she hears his voice, muffled like it’s coming from a paper bag.
He’s standing between the patio doors, watching their child play with something on her lap.
What is it? Her voice is still thick from the Xanax and he doesn’t answer.
She crouches next to her daughter and sees what has her head bent in such concentration. Bluebell is clutched between her palms, still fluttering weakly as she digs her fingers deeper into his abdomen.
She takes the dying bird from Alice and is sure to keep her back turned while she breaks its neck.
There is a rushing in her ears as her husband vomits in the pile of raked leaves and her little girl outstretches her bloody hands.
Now can I have a kitty, Mama?