by Olivia Hunt
A masked nurse prods a six- inch swab up, up my nasal cavity. I try to focus on her elbow, it’s still— then moves in measured, tiny circles, tickling loosening, I’m sure, some brain matter. Then my mind goes to the summer rental— I lie back, watching the endless scroll of clouds and seabirds, my six-year-old brother packs sand into my ankles. Are you turning me into a mermaid? He lets out a long sigh, No. It’s a sarcophagus. As the sun sets, my throat cracks like clay. My chest sinks lower and lower into the shore. My nurse wears the mask of Anubis now, she draws out her hook— the last thing I tasted was salt.
Graduating class of 2021, Olivia Hunt was the 2020-2021 Poetry Editor of the Alcalá Review. This piece was submitted for the Alcalá Review’s Fall 2020 Semester Staff-Produced Original Content.