Art by Maxwell Tretter
Story by Kindra W.
They haven’t been able to write much lately.
They sit in the dark, observing their cat as he presses his front paws into the folded rainbow flag on the table, over and over. Make it flat. Make it comfy. Making biscuits.
They sit in the dark with a pithy retort floating around in their brain from an earlier discussion. The small burst of excitement grips them, and suddenly they hear their heart pumping in their ears. That would’ve been perfect, they thought. That’s what I should text them. Tomorrow morning, so they see it first thing.
But their heart sinks a little. It feels tense as all joy from the revenge saps out of their brain, as quickly as it entered. I can’t sink to their level, they thought. And anyway I might be wrong. I’m always wrong. Or they always say I’m wrong, anyway. They always say my anger originates from my own issues. So is this a reason to be angry? Is this okay?
They look at their cat again, and he’s still making biscuits. They hear a light purr whirring from him, and they can’t help wondering if he’d ever be satisfied with the bumpiness of the rainbow flag.
The idea of rainbow capitalism seeps through their brain and another flash of anger arrives, this time tighening their jaw in the process.
No no, they thought, there’s nothing you can do about any of that right now. And anyway, I might be wrong. I’m always wrong. Or they always say I’m wrong, anyway.
The cat finally tucks his feet underneath his soft underbelly and sinks down onto the rainbow flag. His eyes squint in satisfaction, and slowly the shine from his eyes disappear and he lets himself sink into a sleep. They smile in spite of their tense jaw and confused blood pressure.
They smile, and feel the tightness of their lips stretching for the first time in weeks.
They blink, and see their feelings in black and white, right in front of their eyes. They see it as if for the first time.
They were writing.