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Gulnare’s Marauding Blues

by Riham Adly


I sit on the wooden bench in the little patch of green right around the corner from where I live. The doctor says I have Vitamin D deficiency and must get more sun or my bones will go bad. It is dark and cold and a Man pulls up in a faded blue Buick. The Man is naked from the waist down and looks like he’s playing with the pipe-like thingy shooting up from his middle---I know what the thingy is called, but I have manners. There is something scary; bestial even about the thingy and its Man. Bestial is the new word I learned in class this week.

The Man looks like he’s done, and almost leaves, but he sees me and extends a flaring hand, just like that of a MacDonald's clown in birthday parties.

I didn’t tell you that sitting here, on this wooden bench, in this patch of green under the hiding sun is my “woods time”. I go alone or with someone I really love.

I really love Gulnare. Papa says she’s anti-social and reminds him a lot of me. She’s slick and shiny when I look at her in her little tank, just like those Calla lilies Mama loves to plant. Gulnare’s not into hugging. She just likes to sit there in a corner by herself. Mama calls her “our little kraken”. I named her after “Gulnare of the Sea” from the Arabian Nights. Papa runs tests on her in his mini-lab in the basement, says he’s given her a shot to make her less anti-social---less like me.

I walk up to the bestial Man. Gulnare might just like him. I pull her out of the large glass jar hidden in my bag and watch her socialize.



Riham Adly is a mother, ex-dentist and a full time writer/ blogger. Her short stories appeared in literary journals such Connotation Press, Spelk, Carpe Arte, Soft Cartel, Vestal Review and Page&Spine. Her story "The Darker Side of the Moon" won the MAKAN Award in 2013 and was published in an anthology with the same name.

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