The Unknowing

by Myna Chang

I tug off my glove and scrape at the coin stuck between the boards on the porch rail. My fingernail scritches across the grooves, catches, slips the penny free. A lost piggy bank treasure, found. Stinging cold. My thumb caresses, aching, pressing the heat of me into the coin, remembering its contours, chasing the lines, sinking into its shapes, until a little hand finds me, clutches me like a treasure, flipping, bouncing, and I want to stay in this child’s hand, remember the contours of his skin, but the coin is in motion, like him, too quick, tumbling me backwards, between other fingers now, na├»ve fingers, gloveless and unknowing. I seek her familiar lines, scritch across the grooves, slip free, press what’s left of me into the shape of a woman who does not yet know loss.


Myna Chang's work has been featured or is forthcoming in Best Small Fictions, Fractured Lit, and X-R-A-Y Lit Mag, and has been nominated for Best Microfiction. She is the winner of the 2020 Lascaux Prize in Creative Nonfiction. Find her at MynaChang.com or @MynaChang.