Girija Tropp


The house is an obsta­cle course so I have to feel my way to the kitchen with my fin­ger­tips. I have trou­ble sleep­ing if I am angry. My hus­band is away so I am very free with the switch­ing on of lights. I put some water on to boil. Even though my mind is quite awake, my body is befud­dled, and parched from the ruckus from my head. I hug myself against the cold, and look around for my cup. I have a dif­fer­ent col­or for each day of the week but he had bro­ken the pur­ple one and not replaced it; bought when I could bare­ly afford to do gro­cery shop­ping, dur­ing the week he told me that he had slept with one of his stu­dents. I can­not find a cup of that colour that is inter­est­ing enough, and have replaced it with anoth­er the col­or of ground pep­per that can take on the tinge of what I want, if I match it prop­er­ly. I bought the replace­ment on a win­ter’s cruise in the Caribbean that had been a dream of mine for so long that by the time it hap­pened, the era was not quite right. My feet make a sucky sound on the tile and I notice a roach, flat­tened. They seem to appear when I am on the verge of los­ing restraint. They used to be agile but this one had been too slow even to avoid my night­time slouch­ing walk. They revolt­ed me at one time but now all my emo­tions have the same hue. When I think of my cur­rent prime min­is­ter, it is the same, but I do not speak about it and in that man­ner, I avoid mix­ing up the king­doms of human and insect.

Girija Tropp’s flash fic­tion has recent­ly been anthol­o­gised in The Irreal Reader and SmokeLong Quarterly: The Best of the First Ten Years. She lives in Melbourne, Australia.