Malena Watrous, "Mummy"

Examining the strained relationship between a single mom and her kid.

(from Story Quarterly #42)

Half an hour before Mimi was due back from school, I got out of bed and fried a grilled cheese sandwich in a pan with lots of butter. I wasn’t hungry at all, but we’d agreed once that the smell of grilled cheese filling a kitchen was the coziest smell in the world.

Mimi’s brief kidnapping is scary, and her mother, our narrator, is understandably changed by it. In fact, she keeps talking about how changed she is. Issues of paranoia and co-dependency are explored matter-of-factly, but we’re so deep in the mother’s head, we can’t help but feel sympathetic. Still. The story is so deliberate and singular in purpose, that it’s tough to feel swept up in it. But there’s a reason you can’t turn off a Lifetime Original Movie without a fight. And the twist at the end is worth the trip.
(I couldn’t find a decent pic of Story Quarterly 42 online, so I took my own.)

One thought on “Malena Watrous, "Mummy"

  1. Mary Jean Babic

    Just discovered your blog and am looking forward to exploring it more thoroughly, but I was instantly drawn to the Big Boy figure in the photo. I have a Big Boy bank just like it; is yours a bank? I don’t keep mine next to a bottle of liquor, though maybe I should.


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