The world is a harsh place, says the colony living just below mine. I’m just one of eight watery cubes new to the freezer door today – four are old, but were small so they got a little top up. Seems like maybe death is avoidable, but the tray below assures us, “Nope. The dense ones always get picked first — so they’ll be on their way out soon.”
As the door swings shut on it’s old hinges, I see the tender swirl then she lifts the glass to her nose. Upper number 3 swears she could see her predecessor, but I didn’t see anything. Lower number 10 says maybe she’s finally learning to drink neat. I don’t think he knows what he’s talking about, even if he is the oldest of the bunch. How much can you actually learn through the 15 second intervals it takes for that door to swing shut? It’s not like you can hear anything through it either — once it’s closed we’re nestled right up against the frozen corn. At least the kernels tend to go out in lots, never die alone.
Time passes, and we’re a little more solid. But when she opens the door she stabs at me, and I jump to the sides at the force. Then she takes out both colonies, and puts us into the lower slot. The old colony comes back without Number 10 and 11.
It must be a rough week, because by the end of it we’re now old colony and sitting on top of new colony. The freezer opens and closes a few times today, she’s decided to cook. But like clockwork, she comes back and I can see the sun setting at the same position as yesterday when she pulls us out.
Twisting the tray, we all ache and bust at the sides. Some hang on so tight just to get an extra day, but I almost jump out of my cube at the force. I’m dropped into a low viscosity lukewarm liquid, and I feel sluggish as I shrink. With a quick dash of water, the melt slows, but then she raises the glass to her nose.
A quick wrist flick, and I’m whirlpooling in the glass, then slosh against her teeth as she sip-swallows— so unladylike. She sets me on the counter, and I get a glimpse at the larger world before I finally become one with the scotch.
Melinda is a fisherwoman, birdwatcher, poet and storyteller from northern British Columbia. She has been published in Untethered, The Quilliad and Skirt Quarterly. She tweets @defnotapoet