Liana Imam graduated from the University of Michigan with a degree in English and Creative Writing. Since then her
stories have been published in Flyway and collected in the Harvard Book Store’s little book Microchondria. She is
also a regular contributor to Fiction Writers Review, and was a blog editor at The Collagist from January through July of this year.
I woke up one morning, at some point, and I realized that I didn’t like Elvis Costello at all. What happened was this: we are together, and you like Elvis Costello, like him a whole goddamn lot. What happened was this: all through December I have a series of dreams during which the very worst songs off Momofuku play in the background (“Flutter and Wow,” for example, and “My Three Sons”) and we are always doing depressing things together.
Drinking champagne or going to visit the polar bears. Things not to do, but to have done. Things we’ll talk about later, that make us quiet in bed.
What happened was this: nothing has happened. All the standard things still apply. It is you with that dark hair and those Topsiders, wearing the navy jacket with the big zippers and buttons. It is sitting in hotel bars having that expensive vodka you like and always some gag accessory. Last week you brought red-rimmed heart-shaped sunglasses, too big for our faces, so that they hopped up and down on our cheekbones every time we’d smile. You with that grin when I pulled the sunglasses off your smug handsome face and put them on mine, two hearts to dim my vision, and your hands, your adventurous all-knowing hands. The motor in me, yes, Elvis, was fluttering and wowing.
But there was just this one day, this one morning that I woke up to “Sunday Morning” like any other morning, no matter what day of the week it actually was, and I knew that I had never actually fucking liked Elvis Costello, and that this wasn’t a metaphor for anything.