thoughts on October

thoughts on October

Kyrsten Su

It’s October again and the sun is weak. I don’t know if I’m doing the right thing. Does

anyone, really?

I see myself in the fawn. They don’t know what’s coming. If there is a God, I hope She is

a kind one: She who knows all, who plays people and places and promises like dice,

who gently ushers the does and their babies across a chasm of asphalt before the four

thousand pound hunk of metal hurtling towards them at a hundred miles an hour,

ravenous for their delicate bones and pastry-thin skin, can gorge itself on the waiting

and the innocent.

I feel older than my mother. She was a Buddhist. At least I think she was. Her parents

were, but I know better than anyone that we are not our mothers. I unpack religion on

the grimy turf behind the bleachers of my suburban high school, and I understand.

Belief is reassurance. Someone else is in control. Someone else is on your side.

Someone else knows what’s best, even if you can’t see it just yet. I understand. But I

don’t believe.

He said he was religious. He said rules were made to be broken.

My hands linger on the nape of his neck. My thoughts linger on last spring’s pink

cheeks under powder-pink bed sheets. Sometimes I think about how precious &

pitiful it all used to be.

I don’t want it. I want it more than anything. I tell him to stop.

I don’t think I’ll ever be the same.

Have you heard the story of the Little Match Girl? The cruelty of the immovable

universe has suspended my subconscious for as long as I can remember. If the purity of

a little girl selling warmth on a cold winter street can be ignored, what does God have in

store for me?

In the in-between before I surrender to the fog of sleep, I wonder what I’d see in

my flames. There’s so much I still want.

Would I see Her face? Or would it just be the last flickers of a blackening

matchstick tip,

dying and going and gone?