The summer I learnt to waltz was the summer Mitzi came to stay. Mitzi was mum’s friend since school.
She was already losing her hair when she arrived. Silk wrap adorned with iridescent dragonflies.
The robe appeared after week three. She called it her housecoat and continued to swirl me around our kitchen.
Dancing, she was a dragonfly’s wing, light and fast.
In hold, I tried not to think about the cancer metastasising.
Forward-left foot-side-right foot-close.
I tried not to focus on the hollowness of her bones.
Instead, I thought about how some dragonflies lay eggs that survive the winter.
KEELY O’SHAUGHNESSY (she/her) is a fiction writer with Cerebral Palsy, who lives in Gloucestershire, U.K. She has writing forthcoming with the Bath Flash Fiction Award, Reflex Fiction and Emerge Literary Journal. She has been published with Ellipsis Zine, NFFD and Complete Sentence, among others. When not writing, she likes discussing David Bowie with her cat. Find her at keelyoshaughnessy.com