A New Language

by Jazmine Green

Had she known, she would have said no right from the start.  She would have left no room for negotiations.  But he was careful. 

“It’s your decision.  Whatever you want to do, I will be here for you.  I will support you.  You know I love you.”

“I know.”  He rubbed his hands along her upper arms and kissed her on the forehead. 

“It will be OK.” 

“I know.”

Then the conversations changed.  She wanted to keep it.  She told him flat out.  He wanted to travel. 

“I want to take you to Costa Rica.  You will not believe the rain forests there.  It is so green.  And the sound at night-there’s nothing like it.  You will really love it.  I can’t wait to take you.”

Then later, “Let’s move to another country together.  Let’s do it.  Just leave everything here and move.  We can learn a new language together.  Don’t you think that would be great?”

“But how are we…?”  She didn’t finish, and only added, “That sounds great.”

He sent text messages all day spelling out the urgency with which he felt his life slowly coming to a close.  “I can’t wait to travel with you.”  “I love you.”  “Can I fuck you tonight?” 

The texts were left hanging without any reply.  She could conjure no answer.  She was uncommonly quiet most of the time.  Everyday she inhaled and exhaled her reality.  The thought settled in her diaphragm so that she couldn’t help but live every second with it.  Pregnant.  Pregnant.  Pregnant.

“I’ll have to drop out of school.”  He blurted it out one evening with hot, desperate breath.  She tried to assuage his worries. 

“My parents will help us.  Your parents will help us.”

“I’ll resent this child.” 

And there it was.  It took a while for it to come out so boldly.  It was his truth. 

Three days later her truth came out, without warning.  A stain that granted his freedom.  A stain that broke her heart.


Jazmine Green is a Los Angeles based writer and poet, currently working on her first novel. In addition to writing, she spends her time as  WriteGirl mentor, preschool teacher, and yoga instructor. Her most recent experiments with words can be found at www.jazminegreen.com.

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