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In the farm’s laundry, she scrubs her feet well, massaging in between her toes, feeling tightness in her heart as she squeezes the bones and their structure vibrate, modifying as the purple stains – vestiges of the fruits – begin to fade away, slowly. The sweetness of her saliva, residues of the jaboticabas from the branches, remain until later, the black skin clung to her nails and veins.

She walks into the old house like a passenger from former times, the earthen tiles sending a shrill through her spine, a current of air whispering last century’s ghosts. In and out of bedrooms, the shape of her husband converses with the walls, while her son, sitting on his bed, caresses his face all around with mud. The unknown enemy – an imaginary tractor through the fields – brings him inside.

“Still here?” She asks, recognizing his fear through the mirror.

After she climbed the Jaboticaba tree, the boy’s terror to fall into the earth became clear to her, an amalgam of soils and undiscovered pathways. Hesitant, his departure reinstates his argument with courage, defeating the ghost, who eventually runs away.

Poem published in Torrid Literature Journal.