That Terrible Couch

By Grace Ripperger

I’m sitting in my grandmother’s office on a couch that still smells like the store she bought it from. There is a window behind me, but the blinds are scrunched shut. It’s the middle of the day, the middle of July. I’m 19 years old, and I have work at four. I’m supposed to read in this dull light, but the wall opposite me is covered in framed photographs.

I’m supposed to be reading, but I’m looking at those photographs, those moments dead in the past. My eyes keep making the mistake of looking at ours. In it, we’re happy, long-haired 16. Best friends. What happened to us that summer before we left for college? Because now here we are, split, and I can’t remember our last conversation. Where are you? Because I’m on this terrible couch, and I still need you. (Even though I tell myself I don’t.) There are so many things I want to say to you. But, if I had to pick, I would say: since then—since our split—I have rarely enjoyed myself as I did with you.

Grace Ripperger is a Sophomore studying Creative Writing and Psychology. She enjoys writing poetry and short stories; currently, she is outlining a novel. In her free time, Grace listens to music, thinks about her novel, reads, and then thinks about her novel some more.