Eat the Salt

by Kim Chinquee

It was past her enlistment. Polar, snow humps rising, she couldn’t get on the highway. People got rashes from their heaters, their skin ripe. She put on her parka and the wind blew, and she had to plug her car in. Her boy went screaming for his father, though that was months ago. Boy, she said, there was a place for something. She went out and everything frozen. She watched the channels, the weatherlady smiling with promises. Hey, she told her boy. Her ID card was expired and going South was an option. There had to be plows. She thought about Rosemary. That woman. Her husband and spices. Olive oil and bread and this room had nothing but pizza. The wind howled. She held her boy, uniform. This was a country.

Kim Chinquee is the author of Oh Baby (Ravenna Press) and the forthcoming collection Pretty (White Pine Press), and is co-editor of the forthcoming Online Writing: Best of the First Ten Years. She is the recipient of a Pushcart Prize and lives in Buffalo, New York.

Back to Issue Two: Winter 2009