The Rest of Her
She left her little finger behind when she rushed out the door. We tried to call her back but she was gone and there it sat, pink as you please on the dressing table. We were sure it would unlock something—we searched the house from attic to basement, crammed its nail into every trunk and drawer lock and still couldn’t find what to open. Instead, we divided it into joints and each wore one like an amulet. Cut the hoodoo, said our neighbors, but we needed all the luck we could get, and point made six months later when she was found noosed with a telephone cord and hanging from a stairwell. It was then we realized we should have taken more while we had the chance—a leg, a lip, a handful of hair. Now she was gone for good and the rest of her would be of no use to anyone.
Holly Karapetkova‘s poetry, prose, and translations from the Bulgarian have appeared recently in Alaska Quarterly Review, Prairie Schooner, Drunken Boat, and many other places. Her second book, Towline, won the Vern Rutsala Poetry Prize and is forthcoming from Cloudbank Books.
Photo by Michael Chen