Anjali Khosla Mullany
In the morning I wake, ripe with condensation, to the trumpetedness of
elephants, non-native & extinct. Long-necked cranes? What a strange way to
make something, but it’s not in my control. Sediments collect at the bottom of
the new lake, altering the body. I can hear some, see some from the kitchen
window, bucketing a footed tub for coffee water.
“Lien Ngoc,” the neighboring organist calls through a bathroom wall. The plaster
leaks; or, crepitant rales from the pipes of “le lavabo”, the cat on the banister.
There are no real ways to soothe an ancient, drowned kitty. Too soggy &
unexpected. “Lien Ngoc!” The cat’s daughter is sighing on the stairs. My child
is some blank light at the corner of a finger-pressed eye.
The constructioneers swim away at lunchtime, buoyed by their boxes & pails, so
the creation noises temper down. “How thirsty I am!” In preparation for dinner,
I count eggs before a tiny mirror. It fogs up just as the reflection appears.
“Desperate!” And you wonder why I won’t reply?
The bathroom wall, stilly as a photograph of a gurney, but before the next
morning I imagine it bloats like a bullfrog’s slippery throat.