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American Mourning Dove by Elena Zhang

I have a secret I clutch in my hands. It’s that I miss you. Who can I tell – my brother, my coworker, my husband? None of them would understand how you still burrow into my dreams, your coos mimicking the lullabies you used to sing to me, don’t be afraid, now a clock ticking relentlessly backwards. Always backwards. It’s been so long, and I’ve stopped talking about you to everyone, even to myself. So I'll keep holding this secret in my hands, a tiny, trembling thing, all silky feathers and piercing talons, until it pecks at my palms, ruffles its wings, and waits to take flight.

Elena Zhang is a freelance writer and mother living in Chicago. Her work can be found in HAD, JAKE, Bending Genres, Exposition Review, and Your Impossible Voice, among others. Find her on Twitter @ezhang77

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