The woman comes into the house and lies down on the couch. Staring at the ceiling, she thinks she spends too much time watching flies walk upside down. The man who could give her the good life does not know her name. The man who comes through the door looking for supper will do it in thirty minutes or less. Fuck him.  The woman gets the gun from his drawer but changes her mind. She does not want him to die without suffering, get out the easy way. She wants to watch him, see fear cross his face or even better, appear and stay fixed, a mask of terror rewarding her for suffering his lies. Putting the gun back, she rubs her fingerprints off in case he takes it and kills someone down at the bar some drunken night. Nothing is as heavy as the life she carries on her back like a prisoner carrying stones from the quarry. She knows that tonight he will ask her if she has learned her lesson after he slaps her with the back of his hand because she boiled the potatoes too soft. He will tell her he is going to fuck her brains out because he’s so stupid he doesn’t know what part of her body her brains are in. He drinks too much beer, smokes too many cigarettes, lies to too many women, does not die, comes home every night. She wishes she did not have kids to take care of, wishes she had enough money to walk out and rent her own place, take care of her kids on her own, say “good-bye asshole” and get on the train heading anywhere away from this place where killing and fucking are thoughts that seem to go together in a life she woke up in the middle of, with kids to dress, send to school, feed, put to bed at night.  Killing and fucking the woman thought lying on the couch-watching flies walk upside down, what will it be tonight, killing or fucking, she did not know.

Mary Julia Klimenko c.2005