Eczema’s Goodbye

Her skin was chalk. Small flakes would shatter on the cement like crystal glass. Red splotches on her milk neck: creases of thighs smudged with small bumps – wrinkles formed, even on her stomach, like the shell of a ripe peach, like sin. Crusty yolk painted on the insides of her wrists. But it was her tongue that got me. It was that of a peacock’s feather: vibrant hues of red and orange and blue. She chewed her words like sugar, spoke about the universe like it was marmalade. Once, she’d telephoned me from the bar and had said dip your fingers in jam and let the fish lick them. When the bus hit her, we were all surprised. We had figured the disease would have gotten her first. At the funeral, a flock of grey birds poisoned the sky, like confetti, like origami paper. After, we stopped at an apple orchard. The air was molded out of gasoline and I imagined her soul pressed against the sky like lashes. Perhaps now her skin was that of clouds, changing colors like sea; perhaps now her blood was boiled into ash, sitting down in the roots of the Atlantic, bones on bones deep in the pit of a snake.

Iryna Klishch is a young emerging writer currently studying Creative Writing at Denison University. She hopes her words find you.

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