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𝓠𝓀𝓔𝓔𝓝 π“žπ“• 𝓣𝓗𝓔 π“œπ“π“–π“–π“žπ“£π“’

I found maggots making a home in my dirty dishes, but I would never tell you that. They must think I’m their queen, sitting on a giant throne of food waste. I want to be the kind of girl with insides like an emerald mine, but I throw out unopened bags of soggy-brown spinach like it’s my job. I swim in the murky pool of shit-water at the bottom of the bag. I want to be the kind of girl that composts, but I’m closer to the stuff of which composts are made. Decaying by the day. I want to be the kind of girl that eats ginger and turmeric, but I throw those out, too. Plus rubbery bunches of asparagus and the plastic I said I would walk to the recycling bin. The hole in the ozone calls me its fairy godmother. I bought an aralia from an old man named Bud who smelled like tobacco and rainwater. I bought it because I want to be the kind of girl that communes with nature, but it stopped being alive the moment it was mine. I watered it once, but it already made up its mind about me. When I walk past its withered corpse on my porch I apologize in my head, but never out loud. I don’t want to be this girl, the kind of girl that lives with maggots. Shiny and sterile, an unblemished white couch, clear blue skies wrapped in a light breeze. That’s who I want to be. I’m learning the hard way that we don’t always get what we want. The maggots do, though. They don't want for much. We should all be so lucky.

       MADDY SNEEP's work has been featured by Bullshit Lit, Zero Readers, Stone of Madness, and others. She lives in Austin, TX with her two cats who inspire her to work less and lounge more.