You never do what you say you will anymore. You tell him you will be the woman of his dreams- red flats, spreadsheets, salads. You will be the kind of woman who pats the heads of children, begins a knitting project bigger than a headband, owns nice bras (forever white, breast-shaped even when empty).
You see shadows beyond your Sears curtains in the shapes of sparrows, snowflakes magnified by streetlight, butterflies. You ask your boyfriend what they are and he says Crows. You pull the curtains and the world spills out, yellow. Yes, out on the frozen yard is a murder of crows. Who is going to die, you wonder. You can’t help it. You watch Hitchcock, Dateline, Lynch; you look up the deaths of friends of friends on Google because you want the details. As if the details could explain why. Details only explain how. You think you read that somewhere, like maybe in a Joan Didion novel. Yes, definitely Didion.
You have ideas of what to do with the day, like swim laps in a pool, wipe down the kitchen cabinets, do your nails in Bang the Dream black. But you end up drunk, on the bank of the Arkansas at night, watching yourself swim the length of the river, from Bitting Street Bridge to 13th, or up in the sky between the slow moving satellites.
A cat comes up to meet you and you feed it a McDonald’s hamburger. The river smells like river. When you were young you lost sleep over trout. The question was, did they prefer woolies or woolie buggers?
You never do what you say you will anymore. You never put on the suit with the flowers that fly neatly over the crotch. You never wipe the cabinets clean.
Becca Yenser just drove from Portland, Oregon to Kansas with a U-haul and a dog. Her work appears in 1001 Editors, The Nervous Breakdown, Hobart, decomP, >killauthor, Paper Darts, Metazen, Filter Literary Journal, and HOOT. She likes paying attention.