Image © ​Lita 2017


by Liz Kay September 11, 2017

I’d had my wish and I’d blown it out all over the cake.

But I still had the blue bucket. By the door next to the coats and shoes. It was bought by the seaside in the days when we used to play.

Last year Kevin rescued it from the garden, emptied it of frogs and filled it with dreams on sorry bits of paper wrapped up tight. Gel penned goals: see the northern lights and learn the ukulele. Write a novel and compile a facebook page of rainbows. I’d done the last one, had 1267 followers and counted 336 likes on my best picture so far.

When I check the time it is getting late. I stuff a handful of dreams into my pocket. Tonight I would pick one and promise to make it happen before this time next year.

We drive down to the front and park on the zigzags to watch the fireworks across the bay.

In the car we laugh. The wipers squeak, working hard in the rain. We make footprints in the steam with our fingers and thumbs then wipe them clean with a jaycloth.

Outside, rain curls hard.

‘What if we roly poly all the way there?’ says the boy with the thick hair. I can’t hear any more apart from ‘plane’ and ‘grandma’. He is playing with a sparkler, Mum’s eyes fixed tight on his hands.

The rain goes into my pockets making rivers in my sleeves, laughing at my choice of jacket. My wishes are pathetic, like snotty tissues in a washing machine. The bonfire whimpers across the bay and water has won, rain pissing all over it. God’s having a belly laugh tonight.

And for a split second I wonder whether I would prefer to die in a flood or a fire. How many bunches of chrysanthemums would be left outside my house only for them to die too 5-7 days later. And of the people that left those chrysanthemums, how many actually cared and how many came just to witter about how tragic my life had been from pretty much start to finish.

If a child can sit with their legs open they are flexible and free. If a woman can, she is a slut. The only place I ever danced was in the car. My belly rolling sexy beneath the window. I fantasise about the man at the traffic lights. His name is Ty. I catch his eye, smile. Then my body remembers to be embarrassed and the affair is over.

Listening to mixtapes; rewind back and fast forward. My party for one, hands in the air and backside grinding. But now my backside is tight; full of pain and tears and long long years.

I close my umbrella and leave it with Kevin. I walk towards the sea. I stare at its beautiful vortex. Spiralling towards me it grates and whooshes and sometimes screeches.

I don’t care how fast I run or whether it is feet or heads first.

I roly poly in.


Liz Kay is a writer from Cheshire, UK whose short fiction has been published in print and online. She recently came third in the Winchester Writers’ Festival Competition – Flash Fiction category and is currently busy working on her first novel. She is co-founder of ‘The Writing Kiln’, a Stoke-on-Trent community project aiming to inspire local writing potential: www.thewritingkiln.com. She tweets @elizabethjkay

Lita (Life is Torturing Awesome) is a researcher of a looney parade. Randomly packaged, professionally trained, Lita craves the meaning and quality in the corporeal chaos. By whatever means she portrays vulnerability and serves the painful existence contradictions with bloody social sauce on vibrant garnish of disappointment. For dessert dare to try genital custard biased cake with a disgust crust. Enjoy harder!
www.litapoliakova.com and/or instagram: www.instagram.com/litacollage

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