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“According to the Map”

This essay, published in the Spring 2020 issue of Arts & Letters,
is from the memoir-in-progress, SHE’S UNDER HERE.

Read essay here.


I am going to tell you two stories. One is true, the other a lie, and not necessarily in that order.

Story 1

I sit alone at the kitchen table. The windows are black, the trees in the yard indistinguishable from the sky. The apartment is quiet, my four-year-old daughter tucked into her bed. The baby due in a month rests inside me. My eyes are tired, and I have to tilt the pages of the book in my hand to escape the glare from the overhead light. Across the table the pages of the newspaper lie open, unread. My husband is in the bathroom off the kitchen and has been for some time. He’s been drinking since before dinner, and it occurs to me that he must’ve taken the glass in there with him because the sweat rings on the newspaper have dried. I put the book down and call his name, but he doesn’t answer.

Read more here.