November 16th, 2004

Mask

Based on a True Story

It’s a yellow Labrador, soft and sticky like melted sugar. I’m digging for gold when mummy walks into the garden.
“Sweetheart” she says, and I’m suddenly ashamed. The fear makes my teeth cold.
“It was sick, mum.” She looks at the open puppy and I can’t figure out where to put my hands. There’s a spark off the dandies, blue, bright and gone when I turn my head.
“Of course.” She says. I wipe my palms on the grass.
“It was trying to bite me.”
“I know, darling. Sometimes mummy has sick things too.” There is a white hand, a childs hand, reaching up through the dirt near the bricks of the house. My heart is squeezing. The bits under my nails won’t wipe off. I lick under my nails, and it tastes like lemon grass.
“There are children under the garden.”
“Yes dear, lets go read a bedtime story.”
Its not night yet, so I look at the sun, and make it move in the sky, make everything dark. When I look at my mother again, she’s a shadow.
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