she eels the blue hundred chasing

pencil straight the earth-wormed


corpse, notched in wrappings of

cold rain; my mother and i in a


rib cage; scent of mint tea comes

wafting to me, her vigilant face


dead dredging half-loops of time,

her glossy tossed hair matador


tumbling in black-and-white, while

i watch a page turn to a nursery


scene, long gone, immune to a

welter of despair, no longer there.


Rekha Valliappan is a multi-genre writer of short fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction and hybrid work. She won The Accent Prize and others for her short stories. A former university lecturer at three colleges in two countries, her writing has featured in Queen Mob's Teahouse, Green Hills Literary Lantern, Lackington's Magazine, Eastern Iowa Review, Thrice Fiction Magazine, Locust Magazine, Third Flatiron, Foliate Oak Literary Magazine, The Punch Magazine, Coffin Bell Journal, The Ekphrastic Review, Indiana Voice Journal, Boston Accent Lit, Across The Margin, Rabid Oak, and elsewhere. Her poem 'Sakura' was nominated for The Pushcart Prize 2018 by Liquid Imagination.