Today is January 31, 2015. I am alive and well.

The following is an excerpt from my second book, which still remains untitled. If the blog is too long please let me know it didn’t hold your interest. Thanks.

The Dishes are Rusted with Mash Potatoes

I telephone my case manager after coffee in the morning and tell her I have dirty dogs and a dead boyfriend in my condo. She is quiet. In the pause, my goldfish has swum three circles around his glass bowl. I watch him. I count, and then feed him a pinch of food while my case manager waits for me to speak.

She sneezes.

I ask her if she is catching cold. I can hear her smile as she says no, relieved that I have changed subjects. I’m certain she thinks my mind invented false things, a momentary glitch that my medication has not coated in pink; Pepto Bismol for the brain.

I tell her again that there are dirty dogs and a dead boyfriend in my condo.

“Now,” she says, “what can you do for the dogs?”

“Wash them, I suppose.”

“Do you have shampoo?”

“Apple scented,” I respond.

“Okay then.”

And I think, what is okay?

There are daisies littered across my floor. The dogs have dragged them in from the yard, clumps of dirt attached to their fragile roots. The dishes are rusted with mash potatoes in the sink. The drapes kiss; it is dark in my condo. I can make out the silhouette of the couch and I think to sit down rather than turn on the tub’s faucet, a move toward washing the dogs.

I have not worn shoes for four days. I have not been outside. Dust pills in little balls on my placemat; I have not eaten since potatoes on Tuesday of last week.

My boyfriend died Monday when he packed all his underwear into his suitcase, along with the rest of his clothing and left. He did not bother to shut the door on the way out, hoping I would follow him. I couldn’t bring myself to plead with him to stay one more time. I waited for blue shadows to unwrap themselves from my mind leaving me bright. I keep his towels damp, pretending he has just dried himself from his shower and is in the other room shaving.

I do not know how to tell my case manager I missed love and cried. So, I tell her he is dead.

I stil fixed coffee this morning. I told her that and she thinks I am fine because I have begun to prepare for the day. She doesn’t understand that preparation is no longer enough. So I hang on the phone with her, wishing I could ask her to come feed me strawberries and black beans, hoping she might have my life ready.

I threw pennies in the wishing pond that is slowly being drained and I don’t know how to tell her otherwise.


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