Water-bearer

She stands before the house, holding the gold-rimmed urn. The sacred vessel was the only one of its kind, blessed by her family to be unending, to be bottomless, to be everfull. She stands before the house and feels the weight of it, the cold of it, the sweat of it beading up and sliding against her fingertips, dripping against the sandy earth between her sandaled feet. She stands before the house that holds him and his seed. She stands before the house and thinks of his conniving eyes, his grasping hands and the endlessly hungry mouths he brought out of her, the pale, dull eyes that did not know and did not care for mother, of her body but not her flesh. She stands before the house, cradling the vessel like the child that should have been, the child of dark, wet, knowing eyes, the child cut out of her by his grasping hands. She stands before the house, withholding salvation, and watches it burn.

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