Suburbia by Stela Brix, 2018

A plant lies on concrete. I pick it up. Leaves are withdrawn, hiding from the sky. As if growth is too much to ask.

I don’t blame it.

I should take this home. Even if Mother finds plants saddening now. Too cheerful, too vibrant, she says.

Nancy, my big sister, hated leaving things behind. She saved the smallest articles, except herself. Plants, coins, so much.

Psychiatrists prescribed attitudes. Activities.

The world demanded excess. Take care of your brother, become a wife, subordinate dreams of creating art.

I will not let the plant wilt. I’ll keep it in the brightest spaces. I’ll keep it in the living room where Nancy used to teach me to dance. On the back patio. I never told Nancy I loved her, never told the psychiatrists to take a hike. But how I love this little plant.

Live, I whisper. Live.


About the Author:

Yash Seyedbagheri is a graduate of Colorado State University’s MFA program in fiction. His story, “Soon,” was nominated for a Pushcart.  Yash’s stories are forthcoming or have been published in Café Lit, Mad Swirl, 50 Word Stories, and Ariel Chart, among others.