A crystal shaped tear fell and shattered on the floor,
tiny pieces flying all around.
She became dizzy with pain as she inhaled the sweetness
of the ninety-nine cents cinnamon candle.
Because one footstep did not precede the other at the right moment
and her walls fell apart.
A coffee mug flew off the breakfast table
and out of the window,
onto the streets.
She closed her eyes although she could not see
where it would fall,
from where she stood.
Amongst all the chaos, she forced her arms up,
but their heaviness made her fall back.
They had red marks all over them, and she could feel ropes
cutting through her skin.
But when she looked at them,
she saw nothing.
as her skin dissolved into tiny particles of powdered soap
and flew up and up, nonstop,
up towards the ceiling.
Her heart pounded rhythmically, like a tambourine, against her chest,
and her breasts jiggled,
and the jiggle made her laugh.
And eventually she woke up,
yawning in the laundry room.

Palm Trees

The milky sunlight pours down from one of the clouds,
and bathes the palm trees.
The clouds sigh in slow motion, as they watch drops of sunlight
cling to the leaves.
As they watch my curtains dance,
but no one sings.
These drops of sunlight splattered on my face,
and then became the freckles on my cheeks.
And the clouds keep sighing,
as the crayon-colored cars race through a highway
that looks more like a bridge.
As the people driving them scribble in their minds
the grocery list;
and change the radio station,
looking for someplace better.
Someplace where they can rest their faces on their hands,
wrap themselves in clouds and slide off mountaintops,
but feel no pain.
Someplace where they can swim in sunlight, smell of kiwi,
and throw faded songs away.
Someplace where they can walk with their heads,
and knit the missing pieces of their childhood together,
to never forget.

Pieces of Dust

The room was two spoonfuls of shadows and one tablespoon of light.
I could see pieces of dust floating in the air, shining under dim lights.
The music, which infiltrated the room from every crack and every corner, began to sound
The pieces of dust floated and I followed their every movement. I saw their smiling faces
hanging from each piece of dust, calling out my name in disharmony.
But I snatched my name off their tongues and put it away in my pocket, so they could
never call me again.
The way they pronounced the ‘a’ and their sing-song tone of voice, tasted of relish on a
vanilla ice cream cone; like an illegal lullaby sung to a newborn.
I wondered if there were cowboys in China, and if they rode ponies instead of horses. But
the blonde lady with the bulging ice blue eyes entered the room, hammering her heels
into the ground.
But my shift was already over and I ran to the back door, tripping on a girl who hadn’t
been there a second ago. And as I fell on the floor, my cellphone slipped from my hand
and I saw it land on the ceiling, like gravity was nothing but an old man’s joke.
My heart raced and the world became a blur, and I choked on my pink tears and wished
that the room wasn’t dusty anymore.

by Laura Rodriguez

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