When I tell Cheryl (the therapist) it’s hard for me to rely on others, I think of that time

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By Katherine Shehadeh

when the flies infested our house a few weeks ago. I told my husband something strange was happening. I wanted to say [something strange] was afoot. But he doesn’t take me seriously if I talk too British. Innit. Mummy. The flies had assembled in a circle around the Aboriginal painting. The pointillist one with nature’s ladder and tanned feet we bought when we got married. Don’t compare anything in our home to the movie Hereditary, he said. 

I thought they’d gone until now. The queen fly has come with a clear intention to avenge her swarm. Perhaps you thought only bees had a queen. So did I. Mom and dad are here too. The Queen glides over the tile like a black planchette looking for answers. I scream. Order mom and dad to kill her at once! Dad swats at her with a broomstick. Misses. Our Queen inches towards my foot, the bunion scar saying YES. Again! Come on! I plead with them. They look at me with their four fly eyes. I realize what has to be done. Do it myself.

Katherine Shehadeh is a poet and current reader for Chestnut Review, who resides with her family in Miami, Florida. Her poems appear/are forthcoming in Laurel Review, Maudlin House, Cordite Poetry Review & others. Find her on Instagram @katherinesarts.

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