A year ago today, my cousin, Yaroslava Tarasovna Mel’nik, was killed in a car crash outside of Kiev.

I called her parents yesterday. My fingers remember the number in that peculiar way that memory often associates itself with physical stimuli. I caught myself expecting her to pick up the phone.

I remembered a summer day in center of Kiev, swallows in the air over the theater, the sun burning in the windows, and she and I were on a bench, drinking beer. I drank Chernigivske and she drank the Russian beer familiar to any study abroad student – Baltika. I don’t remember what we were talking about, but I remember being very happy and very sad at the same time. Even while it was happening, the evening already held a quality of a memory, as if she was leaving my life already, turning around for a backward glance, eyes squinting slyly, as if she had a secret she could only reveal when my own time came.

4 thoughts on “Anniversary

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: