“You’re Piggish,” the old man said. He was talking to the dog. The dog told him what to do and how to feel. About life, about love. This was not a pet for a life of quiet contemplation. When the dog wasn’t sitting by his feet, the man draped himself over the living room sofa, wistful for the cat. The cat had never intruded, never pretended to know things. The cat was dead, but the cat was always present. Some creatures never leave.
Every once in a while, he would turn on the television and watch the parade of perfect people roll past. These people seemed almost human. But, it was the dog who kept him firmly planted among the living.
Midnight, on the longest day of the year. What a grand sunset they would have seen together, he thought. The air inside his heart like a bellows. His window shades opened like wings to show off the stars.
“I’m coming,” he said to Margot who wanted to eat him up. He was never enough for her. She floated over to him with nothing on, and it woke him up. He could feel her feline breath, could sense the softness of the hair underneath the damage. Perhaps he was just hoping for someone to be there with.
“I’m going to take it slow,” Margot said twenty-five years ago. Margot, his disenchanted wife. He nodded and let her. He liked how being in bed with her took him somewhere new.
MEG POKRASS has published stories and poetry in Electric Lit, Tin House, Rattle, PANK, 3AM, Wigleaf, Matchbook, NANO Fiction, 100-Word-Story, Smokelong, and many other literary magazines both online and in print. Her flash has been included in Best Small Fictions, 2018, and 2 Norton anthologies: Flash Fiction International (W. W. Norton & Co., 2015) and New Micro (W.W. Norton & Co., 2018). She received the Blue Light Book Award for her collection of prose poetry, Cellulose Pajamas (Blue Light Press, 2016). Her newest flash fiction collection is Alligators At Night (Ad Hoc Fiction, 2018). Previous collections include Damn Sure Right, My Very End of the Universe, Bird Envy and The Dog Looks Happy Upside Down. Meg’s flash has been included in the Wigleaf Top-50 list (short and longlist) numerous years. She currently serves as flash fiction curator for Flash Fiction Festival, U.K. and is the Managing Editor of New Flash Fiction Review.