Amy Marques grew up between languages and places and learned, from an early age, the multiplicity of narratives. Her work has been published in journals including Streetcake Magazine, Bending Genres, and Chicago Quarterly Review. https://amybookwhisperer.wordpress.com/
Seeking the Edges Fiction by Rachel Canwell
CW: Risky Behaviour, Mental Health, Death, Strong Language
After her mother dies, Katie finds herself seeking out life’s edges.
Day after day, she walks along kerbstones and negotiates the fringes of striped yellow platforms. She caresses creases of envelopes, obsessively folds pages of books and unread magazines.
Blades of knives, both blunt and razor sharp, taunt and tempt her fingertips as she strokes them, late at night by the light of a bright, frost-bitten moon.
The edges of tables, with sharp, inviting corners and the jagged edges of evergreen leaves. Slithers of glass, of patience and time. Slices of rich velvet cake, the blades of steel scissors and the far side of scenes.
She hoards and worships them all.
Katie lies on her side, at her edge of the bed, balancing and dreamless, waiting to fall.
She heats her small flat fast and hard, turning the thermostat up to the max. Then opens the windows wide and shivers, naked and alone, daring the winter in.
One day she will gorge and the next she will starve. Sees no one for weeks and then stays out for days intent on kissing and fucking the world.
There is no in between.
Katie arrives at work just before late and leaves a second after early; always travels home in the last carriage on the latest possible train.
The beginnings and the comfortable middles are invisible and irrelevant. Stretching out, barren and endless, completely hidden from view.
For Katie can focus on nothing but the endings; on the magic of fragile and final things. Each one brittle, crumbling; slipping away, cracking into pieces beneath her feet.
And as the edges crowd in, Katie’s boundaries retreat.
Rachel Canwell is a writer living in Cumbria. Her flash collection ‘Oh I do like to be’ was published by Alien Buddha in 2022. She writes short fiction and is currently working on her first novel. @bookbound2019 (Twitter)