Annie had dug a perfectly round hole in the scorched earth of the Australian North Bungulla Reserve. Her mother had kicked her out six months prior to this. No one would call the mother a deadbeat; Annie wouldn’t dare. But the thought would cross her mind over the next forty years, as she waited, for food and for lovers, waiting and imagining the Australian desert shrinking between roads, homes, and farmland, because she couldn’t see it—she couldn’t technically see anything.
Maybe her mother was at fault for what was to come, but Annie suspected that was too easy of an answer and too dismissive of her own freewill as an individual. Annie wanted to be different in the way that kangaroos who didn’t jump were: disappointing to zoo visitors but silently bursting with joy at their defiance, enough so they might as well have been jumping.