Artificial-Body-Parts550.gifArtificial Body Parts
Honourable mention in the 3rd Annual Geist Literal Literary Postcard Story Contest.
The injury I got when I was eighteen turned Mother and me into twins. She still rubs my wrist with mullein from our garden though she really needn’t bother: the fingers on my left hand are plastic. Each day she shakes that little bell in my ear and squeezes my good hand while she cries to the Good Lord to save me, and when faith’s not fast enough, she appeals to science.
Lately she’s been planning my salvation through doctors’ appointments, dragging me to their offices along complex bus routes that wind through this city like syphilis eating away at something, though she’d smack me to hear that. And when I tell her I’d rather walk, that I’d like to walk alone please, she pulls that used tissue from her sleeve, sniffs and switches my no’s for yeses, easy as pie. But her eyes are failing, so maybe she doesn’t know that today I’ve placed us on the wrong side of route 68 so I can watch her lean in toward each bus as it towers over us, blocking the sun.
And while she stands and clutches her purse to her belly, only to slam back down like blackberry jam on toast when the bus zooms past us, I chuckle and wind my legs tight to me in case her hands get to slapping, because I think she’s catching on.