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By Bethany Jarmul


A place within my memory, an intersection. A minivan full of dreams, desires. Frozen by red light. Knock, knock, knock-ity, knock. The sky cracked, hail shards cackling against metal and pavement. I’m a passenger, a child strapped in the back, ignorant of destination or direction.

I wonder: where do birds go when the sky falls in frozen chunks? Do they hide in nests, beneath branches, leaf piles, under the wings of a lover or a mother? Do they create cloaks of mud and flowers to protect their feathered heads, or rest unbothered in fluffy beds? Do they open their mouths, sipping the sky, inhaling Mother Nature’s gift until it splashes into their bellies?

Thoughts, like birds, like hail, rap on the ceiling, doors, windows of this vulnerable vehicle, of my burgeoning self. They call out, crying. But I am the only one who hears them. I have a choice—to answer or remain silent. Here in this electric place, an intersection.