The Missing

I hold the egg in my hand, my fingers tracing the contours of the shell; its tough but ultimately fragile protection. I watch my hands move, pale and blue-veined. My fingers pause, and for a moment the egg, my hands, and where I am and who I am, is forgotten. My mind empties. For a few precious seconds I am at peace. Then I return to myself, shake my head, and move away from the sink. Turning to the mixing bowl on the work surface I crack the egg against its brim. The yolk and egg-white slop down into the bowl to join the butter and sugar. I break five more eggs into the mixture. Cracking the last egg, a few pieces of shell fall into the bowl. Delving into the sticky mess with my fingers I hunt out the tiny, jagged pieces, then turn to the sink to wash my hands. I catch sight of my face reflected in the kitchen window. Lately I’ve come to believe that this mirror image is a deception, a trick of the mind: I could not have grown so old without noticing…

‘The Missing’ was published in the Northern Ireland literary magazine ‘Verbal’ Issue 7, September 2007.



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s