When his eyes close, the dark fall of lashes reminds me of the soft brush of a feathery bough: Christmas needles spread like the fold of an angel’s wing. He hides this way too; it is a child’s magic. When his eyes slip closed, you cannot see him.
I remember me, slipping unnoticed—the way I wanted to be—into the corner behind the Christmas tree. The world was small and secret and scented with the woods in winter, like Narnia. I would pull a blanket around my shoulders, paper-thin pajamas stretching warmth across my back, as I wrap twig arms around knobby knees. Listening to the quiet comfort of solitude. Watching.
Tiny flames of red and green burning just for me. Garland loping silver trails of stardust. I would stare at the winged boughs draped with wonder and think, No one sees you like I do.
And now, as his dark lashes fall, as he wishes away the world, I think, No one sees you like I do.
Elizabeth Maria Naranjo’s work has been published in Literary Mama, Brevity Magazine, Slab Literary Magazine, Hospital Drive, The Portland Review, and a few other places. Her debut novel, The Fourth Wall, was released in June 2014 through WiDo Publishing. You can follow her on Twitter @emarianaranjo.