Literary Orphans

Just So You Know by Ann Hillesland

I just wanted to let you know that the crumbs on the counter are not from the leftover pie. It’s still safe in the fridge, where it’s living a happy life in its pink box, waiting for the little light to come on. Also, I washed the wine glasses and put them away. Well, except for the one I broke. I wasn’t going to tell you about it because you’d never notice but then I decided to just go ahead. You won’t get angry about a wine glass, right? You’re not a Neanderthal. That’s what my sister called you when we were first dating. I’d like to think she has changed her mind now that she knows you better, but, well, she hasn’t. She just crosses her arms and gets this smirk, like “Someday you’ll agree with me.” Sometimes I do end up agreeing with her, but not about everything. Not about ‘N Sync, for instance. I still think they suck. I know you’re always complaining that I’m a packrat, that I have too many coats and why do I need seven different kinds of cereal, but I bought a new set of towels for the bathroom. The other ones were fraying. I snuck the Kohl’s bag into the house while you were in the shower last night. coffee_and_cigarette_2_by_marta-bevacquaAlso, just to let you know, my old high school boyfriend tried to friend me on Facebook, but I turned him down. Roland. What a funny name, right? Who names their kid Roland? That’s what you’re thinking, I’m sure. But it suited him. Also, I put three sugars in my coffee at work yesterday. I’m not fat, though. Not one pound heavier this morning. OK, yes, I did have some leftover pie, but just a sliver. You wouldn’t notice it, it’s such a tiny slice, but the apples were so good—sweet and cinnamony and still with some fight even after all that baking.

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Ann Hillesland’s work has been published or is forthcoming in many literary journals, including Descant, Fourth Genre, Monkeybicycle, Sou’wester, Corium, and SmokeLong Quarterly. It has been selected for the Wigleaf Top 50 Very Short Fictions and presented onstage by Stories On Stage. She is a graduate of the MFA program at Queen’s University of Charlotte.

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–Art by Marta Bevacqua