Monday, October 17, 2011

“Laundry” by Rachel Mangini

Emptying the drier you find a pair of underwear that do not belong to you. They belong to your lover and she has left them behind. You’ve dried them accidentally, fraying the lace. Had you noticed them when switching the clothes from the washer to the drier, you would have laid them flat to dry. This action intended not only as a courtesy to your lover, but also to preserve the lace for the sake of preserving the lace. Its delicate pattern, so often described as spidery, not spidery in this case but pink and scalloped where it rested, yesterday, against the skin on her belly and lower back. Your lover now asleep on a plane pointed away from you and your clumsy laundering. From the clumsy way you said goodbye, again, at the airport because she stood so rigid and kept her eyes focused on something behind you. Her eyelashes also not spidery and not moist, though you imagine them to be when you reconsider the moment now as you fold the clothes you wore when you were with her.

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