Once upon a time of unfeigned joy, you watched the full moon bring the tide in, laughed as the sea chased you at its bidding. Every swirled bowl of water, every stirred mug of milk, carries the memory of the sea. The sea does not remember you. Crashing in higher and higher waves upon the sands, she sent you scuttling home in flight from her fey embrace. She never even knew you were there; but you did know. You do remember the sea. Feeling the rasp of the paper you are ripping in the base of your spine, watching the little word-stained fragments falling about your feet like soot-maimed snow, you regret the impulse to flee that wild oblivion, to go on drawing the ragged breath that is still fighting its way past truths that you cannot bear to share a world with; and somehow, somehow, the sea is helping. The waves would fain have extinguished your breath; their memory keeps it flowing, in and out, in and out, murmuring like the moon-spurred sea as she crashed on the sands once upon a time.
Hibah Shabkhez is a writer of the half-yo literary tradition, an erratic language-learning enthusiast, and a happily eccentric blogger from Lahore, Pakistan. Her work has previously appeared in Plainsongs, Microverses, Sylvia Magazine, Better Than Starbucks, Post, Wine Cellar Press, and a number of other literary magazines. Linktree: https://linktr.ee/HibahShabkhez