by Alexandra Caselle
The café was the last place I saw my husband alive. On the same day I gave birth to life, he lost his. Today marked the one-month anniversary of the earthquake that killed Blue and his medical team. I had been reliving our final morning together with the hopes of resurrecting him. I settled into the booth with my twin newborns. The manager of the café ushered out breakfast and lit incense. He spread out the newspaper that highlighted Blue’s relief efforts. I put on my husband’s lab coat, rank and splattered with debris, and whispered his name until he appeared. Blue replaced his cigarette with a toothpick. I still hadn’t disposed of the packs sprouting all over our car’s interior like mattress wires. He pushed his muffin aside. “You haven’t said much about me leaving again.”
I sipped my latte. “It seems mighty selfish. You care more about those survivors than me.” The couple behind me cleared their throats and rushed out as I talked to no one, only air. Hot Danish and a shopping bag orphaned at their table. Orphaned like the children Blue rescued on his first trip. Orphaned like the fifth of vodka that remained from his binge when he returned home.
He smiled. “I want to make a difference. Can’t you see that?” Reality returned. I collapsed into a heap of bones and begged him to come back. As if it were that simple to invoke him into being, as if I could fill the void. The manager came over and helped me up.
Why did I do this to myself every day?
Alexandra Caselle is a Floridian writer and poet who envisions herself as a dreamer and a maverick who wants to change the literary world, one story at a time. She is currently at work on her first novel and other short pieces. Her website is http://rheteffects.wordpress.com.