The Snail, by Amie E. Reilly
My father would use the salty brine from the olive jar as salad dressing, pouring it until a little pool formed at the bottom of his bowl, lettuce leaves ever so slightly swirling, like the dream I had last night where a snail circled softly around a pile of salt, but it did not melt, just climbed higher, and when I called to him to look he walked away, jangling the keys that dangled from the balloon-shaped leather keychain he used to hang on a hook by the front door of the army base house we lived in when I was four, where once I saw a real snail on our wide concrete sidewalk and crouched down low beneath the hot Oklahoma sun and watched it drag its slime across the shadow of my hair while my father started up the Volkswagon, his cigarette smoke swirling patiently from the window.
Amie E. Reilly
Amie E. Reilly is an adjunct professor in the English department at Sacred Heart University in Connecticut, where she lives with her husband and ten-year-old son. Her most recent work can be found at Fiction Advocate, The New Engagement, The Evansville Review, and Entropy. She also blogs at https://theshapeofme.blog/.
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