Ive been fighting feelings like killing spiders lately, she thought. She wants to keep adding to the tattoo collection on her right arm. Next Ill get the shy ballerina drawn by one of my favorite indie artists, she thinks. Then some words. Theyll have to be musical and significant. Eventually she will put some from "You" by the 1975. That song will always remind her of the road trip to California this year. Her most recent tattoo is a black and grey mouth. She had talked to her cousin fifteen hours straight with only a few thirty second intervals of meshed lyrics being sung into the rare silence. By the end her throat was dry like the desert they reached. The desert by the sea was her childhood home. Her home now was the forest by the sea. Growing up she felt that move. She really did grow up in the light and move into a darker part of the world.

She had missed her aunt. Her aunts talks and emotions that sometimes were a mirror to her own. Now her aunt had two younger children who barely knew who she was. The oldest was coming home from war and she had come to surprise him. She had missed him becoming a man. They had just been kids climbing trees before she had to leave.

The day of the party she was hungry. She filled her belly with chips and dark wine. Her cousin came home. The sun went down and down and in its drift and lilt family held glasses and said toasts. When she was asked to speak up she gave fair warning, cried and then said "You grow up with someone knowing you would take a bullet for them, you would die for them and then they grow up into someone who is willing to take a bullet for just about anyone, they would die for everyone."

She thinks about how families host parties but certain parties stop. No one celebrates another birthday after the person dies. She moved away and she didnt see her dads uncle laughing from his deep cave of a gut, proclaiming he was just so happy to see her. She doesnt see her great grandpa throwing wrappers at the children or winning at cards. She doesnt see the blue wallpaper in her grandpas kitchen. She doesnt see her cousins flocking around presents like seagulls do to chips on the beach. Instead she sees hurt. And its not anyones fault except the people that hurt them, she says to herself. "And one of those people is God." So she keeps fighting feelings like shes killing spiders. In Oregon, in Washington, in California. Every place she lives spiders get in. She is too sensitive and scared. Sometimes in life she doesnt see things and other times she is staring straight at the sun. Its all creepy, blinding moments right now. Time feels like seaweed and insects.

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