Still in Your Fingertip – by ROB PARRISH

Still in Your Fingertip

We are in bed and you start a message on my back. You move your right index finger at a controlled pace. First a T, then H. Next an I. A slow-curling S follows. Your finger drags off my back. I say the word into the bedding. You tap my back once for confirmation and swipe my skin as if it is a chalkboard, nails slightly digging.

The next word starts with an I and then another serpentine S. I say is, but you double tap. You place your finger firmly below my left shoulder blade and pong out an N, then carve in a crucifix. I correct myself. You follow with one firm tap.

I want to turn around and ask about the use of contractions and if apostrophes should be acknowledged, but you place both of your hands on my back as if you know, that you feel me tense up with the lack of punctuation.

There is hesitation between us. The next word is still in your fingertip. We both know what it is and it does not need to be worked into my skin. A fragment looms.

You once told me thoughts were not meant to be expressed all the time, that three words lose their fervor when used like goodbyes.

You tap twice and collapse next to me.

***

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Rob Parrish’s work can be found in Gravel, The Harpoon Review, The Airgonaut, and Birds Piled Loosely, among others. Rob is an editor at (b)OINK. He lives in Milwaukee, Wisconsin with his dog, Coltrane.

 

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Categories: FICTION, FLASH FICTION

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