A Quarterly Journal of Contemporary English Language Haibun
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September 2007, vol 3 no 3

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Katherine Cudney


Making Believe

Lying awake, eyes adjusting to the darkness. Rocking back and forth, keeping time with a song I remember. As I do each night, I'm waiting for my sister, whose bedtime is an hour after mine. When she opens the dormitory door, I will feign sleep, letting one arm dangle off the edge of the mattress. I'll position my open hand so it will be in her path and she will stoop down without breaking her stride, lightly stroking my palm with her fingers as she passes by on her way to her own bed. Then, I'll make a tight fist and tuck it under my pillow, willing the sensation of her touch to stay there until morning.

cloud-covered moon
the faintest scent
of my mother