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The Short Form

“Rodent Sounds”

Amy Butcher


This was how it began: they were first talking and then they were moving and then they were moving out of state. They fell in love. He found a job. What else is there to say? They lived in a pretty town with foggy lamplights and a white gazebo.

They had first one baby and then two and raised them in a country house with big, long looming windows that looked out on standing cattle and tall weeds that moved together, like pastoral brush stokes on a fresh, wet canvas.

It’s easy to be in love with that beginning, but still she imagines her parents met and probably never once did they think that this is what would happen–that this is how things go. But maybe that’s exactly how they go. Maybe love that seems so certain isn’t so certain when it starts. Maybe you fall in love with someone strangely.

Maybe they make rodent sounds that make you laugh.

And maybe you just don’t know and you move together until you do.

We read it in Necessary Fiction.