By Nora Nadjarian

We heard different versions of the story. That she had nowhere to go. That she was a bit slow. That she left a trail. That they followed her. That she was seen in a corner. That she wasn’t  seen in a corner. That she cried out. That she didn’t cry out.  That she wasn’t destroyed. That she was.

A long time ago there was a girl who laughed a little strangely. She had full, red lips, which made her look like a clown. At first she laughed with us.

A snail appears out of nowhere, after the rain. A school friend steps on it. I hear the crunch, as if it’s eggshells breaking. I know that’s the sound of ruin.

Nora Nadjarian is an award-winning poet and writer from Cyprus and has been published internationally. Her work was included in various anthologies, most recently in Europa 28: Writing by Women on the Future of Europe (Comma Press, 2020) and in Root, Branch, Tree, the 2020 National Flash Fiction Day Anthology (UK). Her latest book is the collection of short stories Selfie (Roman Books, 2017). Follow her on Twitter: @NoraNadj and Instagram: noranadj.

Art by Lesley C. Weston (Pen and Ink)

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