AN AQUARIUM FOR THE DEAD| Inara Lalani

I have this theory,
That for six days, I could maybe keep a goldfish alive long enough so that I could see you again.
On day one, I would watch the salesman pull it out from its home, and tuck it into a bag filled with more air than water.


On day two, I would search up a name to give it.
A name that would trap the energy of the way I used to say my your name on my lips,
and the way my tongue tapped the backs of my teeth so gently.
On day three, I would pretend that it is its birthday
just so I wouldn’t have to feel like I missed out on so much of your life already.
On day four, I would swish my fingers around the tank,
watching the water bounce off the walls like the way I did when you put me on your lap,
and balanced me like I was on a seesaw.
On day five, I would feed it too much because I liked seeing the way it formed little o’s with its mouth,
because to me it seemed like you were trying to speak after days of being silent.
On day six, I would change the water in my fish tank,
hoping that this time  a drop in there somewhere once rolled down your cheek because
God I feel like I might kill this fish soon
and I just really want to see you again.

—–

Inara Lalani is a sixteen y/o that is buried beneath her words that are scattered across the world with the turbulence of airplane flights. She writes on Tumblr here (unlavishly.tumblr.com) and here (inksoldiers.tumblr.com).

Vagabond City Literary Journal

Founded in 2013, we are a literary journal dedicated to publishing outsider literature. We publish art, poetry, and creative nonfiction from marginalized creators.