Flash fiction by Daniel A. Olivas
I step into the bathtub, and Mamá stands in the doorway telling me to be careful, don’t slip, crack your head.
As I ease myself into the hot water, she says: Mija, what is that?
I freeze, my butt just touching the water’s surface. What’s what? I ask.
She says: You got hair now? Down there? She covers her mouth when she says this, like she’s about to throw up.
I never told her that I got my first period last month. My older sister Celia told me to keep it secret from Mamá. I asked her why but she just shook her head, face all screwed up like she ate something bad.
Mamá walks to the sink, opens a drawer, and pulls out tweezers. She holds them up, squints like she’s trying to see if they’re okay. Then she looks at me.
Get out, she says. Get out now.
[“Pluck” first appeared in Codex Journal.]
I am exhausted but still riding high on my experiences at AWP in Seattle. I plan on publishing here some photos and a few thoughts in a couple of weeks. And on March 15 and 16, I hope to see some of you at the Tucson Festival of Books. I will be on four panels and there will be many great writers participating including a strong contingent of Latin@ authors as described in this Arizona Daily Star article. More soon...