Circular Orphans

Gina Twardosz

I think she might’ve whipped it at him in the street once, or more likely, he asked for it back, but somehow, I have come to possess my mother’s engagement ring. It has a modest red stone, possibly garnet, shaped into a heart, placed onto a sleek gold plated band. It didn’t cost a lot and was bought so far after their engagement that I remember its selection and purchase. I don’t think my father proposed with any ring, they just shook hands like a business proposition. It was a marriage of convenience, mostly, which is not to say there wasn’t any love ever, but mostly the certificate was signed because it made sense (love, to me, has never made much sense) and I feel odd owning it now so I’ve stuffed it away in a box. I think about wearing it sometimes but I can’t detach it from its symbolism. Garnet is also my father’s birthstone. I almost pawned it once, but I hated the thought of someone else having it. I don’t think the ring will ever be worn again. I don’t think it’s something to be passed down. I think, maybe I should give it back to my mother, but then what would I even say? Here’s this love back.

Gina Twardosz (she/her) has had work published in Thimble Literary Magazine, Gotham’s The Razor, and Querencia Press. She has work forthcoming in Allium, A Journal of Poetry & Prose and Cobra Milk Magazine.