There’s a knot behind my throat, and another under my kidneys, interrupting not only my digestion but my mental processes.   

I think the conductor of my train of thought is a short, pot-bellied, wild-eyed middle-aged man with corduroy trousers and an apron borrowed from the butcher who directs the chopping, disecting and poking through of my innermost ideas. On the hem: small fingerprints of blood.

My father is washing dishes, while my mother eats. Their voices are a constant reverberation, a hum that buzzes, snaps. He is sharp, but distant, and she sugar coats sentences with bitter sweet sarcasm I am unsure if I’m supposed to laugh or cry at.

I feel like I’m halfway between cordovan and rust. Brown is kind of an ambivalent mood, several different shades of yellow, orange and red, warm, fragrant, sour. I hardly know what to make of it.

It’s like I’m asking questions, and getting them back, post marked return to sender. When I look at the window, expecting a stretch of slow, vulnerable sky, I’m met with a painful darkness that only offers me my own reflection – a petty gift of condolences.

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