Distant Retrograde Orbit

distant retrograde 1She loves the way January smells. A crease in clean linen, the metal cap from a flask of vanilla extract. The moon swells in the sky above her and her coat no longer buttons. Her sisters ask who did this as if it were an act of vandalism, as if she wasn’t in the room. She doesn’t talk about it. She walks alone at night. She forces her boot’s tip under a crust of ice and smiles at the cracking sound. Deep inside her, a stranger shivers. Sliding her hand over her belly, she thinks: Get used to it, kid.



Judith Lloyd is an artist, writer, and monologist who studied in the Iowa Writers’ Workshop as an undergraduate. She currently lives in Baltimore, Maryland. Her first publication, Read It Back, was published by Dancing Girl Press in 2014.


Photo credit: Vince FL


3 Responses to “Distant Retrograde Orbit”

  1. henry irons says:

    Well, where do I start. This short story appealed to all 5 senses. I smelt the vanilla, I felt the brisk touch of the metal cap, I heard the ice crumble as the sun heats the bowels of the distant Earth, I could taste the bitter air of the cold night and I witnessed the Moon swelling, brilliant. Truly fantastic exploitation of the senses.

  2. Bert says:

    Absolutely beautiful.

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