• Katherine Qiao



Excerpt: "In my mind, I’m holding a bulky piece of coal. Dark, chalky, and heavy to carry. My fingers slip easily over its smooth surface, and they come away smeared and dirty from the residue. I imagine setting it on fire; it blows up in flames easily like they did in the tarnished fireplace in my old home, and I’m left facing the ashes. The ashes, I know, are about ten times more radioactive than the unburned coal. Emotions are the same way, once they reach a certain threshold where they begin to drive you rather than the other way around. Once it’s the heart that’s speaking, not irrefutable facts and mind. It’s unreliable, dangerous, and ashes themselves can fly away with the slightest blow of the wind, light as they are. Flee really, as soon as the environment gets tough, and their strength is tested. They’ll land wherever they please; it’s not in my jurisdiction in the slightest. For that reason alone, I don’t trust it. And as far as I’m concerned, Liam has just set himself on fire."

Published In:

  • Confined Connections, Aug 2017 [An excerpt, renamed "Brother"]



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