Vlada Khmel

so i go out in the yard. she’s not there. okay, i think, she wasn’t there anyways. i go around the building, and there’s a kids’ sports ground on the side – you know, different exercise machines, a basketball ring… and pullup bars. three levels: low, medium and tall. i mean, tall for kids, too small for grownups, like, up to the shoulder, i don’t know. a bit higher maybe. 

and she’s there hanging. upside down. in a dress. can’t see her head under the skirt, but her underwear – you’re welcome. swinging her arms onto the ground. 

i don’t know… i sometimes think it’s all because of the name. it’s just so… male. maybe that’s why?

i first wanted to call her alina. that’s a beautiful name. alina. alina. nice. feminine. and then mom says: “let’s call her sasha”. sasha. alexandra. alexandra sounds aristocratic. 

aaaalexandra aaaaalexandra

sounds so feminine in that song. but doesn’t work in life somehow. 

and now i think – that one… the one was before me, what kind of a child was she? just as crazy as Sasha? why did they decide they needed me anyway? why did they have me too? though she was just so small, it’s hard to make sense of it. 


but i personally wouldn’t have gone for another child.

W2 remains silent for a while, then stands up, goes behind the chair and rests her arms on the chair rest. 

W2: when mom died –

pause. W2 reaches out for the water, drinks. 

W2: when mom died, i thought that’s it. i’ll die here too. she was in hospital, of course, and the doctors were preparing us so gently, but then snap – she dies – you just can’t be ready for something like this. i was holding on until i saw her there. it was so hard on us. sasha must still be shocked – she didn’t even go to the funeral, imagine. what a shock. no one from her family has died before, and she’s such a creature of comfort, and there it is… all of her life she’s been around… so, i didn’t make her go, it’s a dead body, you know, not everyone can handle that. 

pause, W2 remains standing.

i don’t know what to do, i can’t do anything. 

i won’t do anything. 

i have nothing to do. 

i don’t have to take out bed pans, don’t have to change diapers, i don’t have to cook those diet lunches, i don’t have to visit anyone at the hospital. i have to grieve.

and i don’t want to grieve.