|She's not much more than a skeleton, skin stretched taut over her ribcage, her hipbones pushing outward, trying to escape. And her name might be Sarah. She is the color of the smog and streets and ashes and the sky before the rain comes -- but it's always raining here. She pays three dollars for her coffee just to stay awake and stare at all the people walking past. She can still hear the seagulls.|
Seattle won't absolve her of her sins. She spends her nights making love to strangers in the alleyways, hiding her lips inside their necks so she won't have to tell them anything, burying her hands beneath their ragged polo shirts and pressing her bony fingers into their backs, searching for their souls. There will be no second chances. The rain lashes across her face and bites her eyelids with its razor teeth, but she does not turn away. It is better in the dark.
There are children laughing somewhere in her memories, building castles at the water's edge. She can almost touch them. There are no fluorescent lights shining in her eyes, no metal tables, no scornful people screaming judgements. There is only the seashore. There is no blood, no pain, no one grabbing at her heartbeat. There is only Jersey. There are no whispers, no blue lines, no tears that seem like they will never stop. There is only home.
She is empty. Sometimes in her sleep she feels it kicking. There is nothing. But she cannot forget the way that she imagines it would feel. Her arms wrap around her knees in silent misery and longing for the tiny body they will never hold. She throws a bread crust in the air and hopes the gulls will catch it. But she is a world away from Jersey, and she hasn't eaten in days. She is empty. And her name might be Sarah.