Univocal – having one meaning only

“Try to insist more! Maybe if I am here too she will give up”
He shook his head. He knew too well that when her mother said “no” she rarely turned back.

Kibosh – something that serves as a check or a stop

She looked around her. The wooden pilasters were so high she could barely see where they ended. She squeezed her hand in between two of them. But the distance was so narrow she could barely get until her forearm. She shook them. Nothing. Solid as concrete. She started screaming and crying, hoping that her voice could reach beyond that cage.

Footsteps from the corridor. Relaxed as if she was not living a state of danger. She started screaming harder to capture the whoever was that person’s attention. A woman came into the room.

Hands! Hands that grabbed and lifted her up.

“Shh shh…what’s going on love? Don’t you like your new bed?”

Her mom started cradling her while the little daughter still flooded her cheeks with tears.


She was missing from her hometown for three years now. Time flies when you are in a desperate search of a job. The cottage house was yellow, as she remembered it. Though it lost some brightness, turning into a mustard-like tone, getting dustier together with the porcelain statuettes on the shelves – because her mother did become tired, so tired, to tidy up flawlessly as she used to.

Number 15

Me and coffee have the most stereotypical love relationship ever. I do love it, although it is suffered love, the one of the kind you keep on being stuck with even if it does not love you back.

What does that mean? That I need it. My body calls for it; even if I am already shacking and my blood veins are shrinking themselves down to almost disappear, it needs just a drowsy face to my brain to believe that yes, I need more caffeine, no matter if I will end up feeling I am having heart attack for good 30 seconds – I will feel great anyhow afterwards for having survived.

I crave it. Better say I used to crave it so much that now I don’t want to let it go anymore. I do remember vacations in Calabria calling watermelon with funny names and expecting it to appear anyway on my plate; and then asking for cappuccino, getting extremely pissed off when my mother winked at the waiter whispering “Just a drop of coffee, please”. I must have been 7 years old and being in my latency stage, and so reclaiming things that I didn’t know – maybe I didn’t – that would do me no good.

It’s my reassurance. Part of a routine, so to say. Waking up zombie like in the morning and knowing that it is there – until my neurons are fast enough to make me remember where to find the yellow packet and my arms strong enough to unlock the coffee machine. Embracing me every single day, no matter how bad, sad, mean, I have been the day before, it keeps all the things the same – fire-brown liquid-cup-throat.

It is part of a routine then, that I try to shake, rekindle. For example, sometimes I only go for black coffee. Other times I disguise it with a drop of cream milk – yes, I do live in a northern European country – other times I shock it with the surprisingly good combination – works properly only if the coffee is superhot– of honey, certain periods I like to create a sandy-like bottom layer of – preferably – brown sugar in the cup. Shakes resembling a frustrated wife buying naughty underwear in the expensive shop to surprise her partner at night.

So yes, me and coffee have the silliest, most stereotypical relationship ever. My mom used to tell me about relationships, “The most important thing is that you like him and that he makes you feel good”. And I am over there, I guess.