2 min read

Our Collection

Our Collection

She died in a sea of wind-swept fury,

her arms spread wide to catch the waves, she

died with her cheek to the wind. Watch closely: the

ocean closed over her head, pushed her under, she opened

her eyes even wider to watch as the rage of

her life became muted by all of the weight

of the water.

She sank to the bottom, the sand drifting over her

ankles and holding her, heavy of course but no match for

the anger that sang in her belly. She

sank like a woman who’d followed instructions each

day of her life, like a woman who listened and

waited all day for permission to breathe, like a woman who

tucked her feet under the hem of her skirt when she

sat, like a woman who didn’t look twice at the

shoes in the window, the red ones with heels, no she

didn’t look twice, and she smiled when she wanted to

scream, and she kept herself small and she followed

the rules to the letter. The anger she ate made her

heavy, so heavy, and heavy she sank

to the bottom.

We found her there, weighted by sand, perfect-quiet,

eyes lifted to look at the darkness above her.

We came with our hands on our hearts, our

knives clenched in our teeth. When we cut

her chest open (our treasure, our treasure) she

blinked, as if tears stung her eyes but she still didn’t

stop us. We cut and we pulled and we

broke through her ribs and we found it, the

stone that was almost a heart. It was

cumbersome, rough in our hands and the

unshouted words of her life kept it cool but we knew,

oh we knew, and we took, it was ours for the

taking. We left her there, weighted, her ribs

full of water, the little white wandering crabs flooding over

our footprints to see if perhaps there was

shelter or food. Little fools, little crabs, seeking

places to hide when there’s treasure for

having if only you know how to take it (our

treasure, we took it, it’s ours).

We’ll bring it back home with us, to our collection

and there we will set it precise and

secure on a stone, and the hammer

will fall where it may and the stone will crack open

and there on the inside (so perfect, the inside) all shining with

bitten-back words, with impatience and temper — resentment

the brightest of all — bright our beauty, our treasure

to shelve and to look at, to polish and honor

our treasure, our treasure. A shame she will never

be able to see (she could never appreciate, not the way

we do, it’s better this way). Little crabs, they will

feed on her, live in her, then she will surely feel

useful and wanted again.

The shelves almost full, look how lovely. Such work

just to get them but worth all the effort, each one breaks so

differently, each one a beauty. So tiring to

harvest but oh, how they brighten the room. For tonight

we’ll enjoy them (exhausting to find them, important

to simply sit back and admire them, our passion, our

treasure, we earned this, our

treasure, it’s ours.) Tomorrow, another.

Tomorrow, another. Tomorrow,

another. Tomorrow.