URSULINE - michelle reale

Ursula is loveless and covered in fur. She knows just three people in the new country. In my country we all look like this, she says. She invites them to her apartment luring them with vodka, deep tissue massage and haircuts, her specialty. “Oof”, she says to one, his hair like a big hat , just like the kind they wear in the old country. She begs to be stroked. They grimace, but begin softly. Then, harder, as though she is a dirty stray off the street. They drink and talk amongst themselves. She catches a word here and there. Ursula swigs vodka and croons a sad song in a language that makes her throat hurt and her eyes tear. The more she cries, the more the hair grows, thick and lackluster. The fur under her eyes is wet and matted. Her friends’ feet shift in their cracked little shoes, looking to escape. One of them takes the scissors, attempts to cut the thickest parts. Ursula, hysterical, pushes the foreign hand away. The blades are dull anyway. She hears their voices from the dimly lit stairs. They leave just enough vodka to get her through the night.

Michelle Reale
Aliens in the Prime of Their Lives
Brad Watson