I keep my soul in a suitcase tucked under the bed, where spare blankets and duvets abide. This is a safe, quiet place where no one else goes. There’s no danger here, only sanctuary.
I keep my soul in a suitcase shoved deep under the bed where monsters gather at night. I hear it crying when the rains cease falling and the moon stops hanging its head. The sound is a constant these days.
I keep my soul in a suitcase hidden deep under the bed, amongst other such discarded junk. I have no use for it any more, never did. Perhaps one day I shall stumble across it, undo the case’s rusting catches, and unpack what’s left. Then again…
I keep my soul in a suitcase too deep under my bed, where dust motes gather and spiders make webs. There’s no means to reach it, as my back hurts and old age has ruined me. No, really, it’s true. I hope it’s doing well, though, and it will remember me when I’m gone.
There’s a soul in a suitcase left under a bed. There are others, too, but they don’t converse.
“There’s sharks in the river!” screamed Ray.
Our elders set out to kill them, men and women. No one returned.
The army tried next. They dynamited everything, then drained the river. There wasn’t a shark or a villager in sight.
“I lied,” confessed Ray.
“So did our parents,” I replied.
She made sweeping changes, everything from burning the curtains to killing the cat. The outside faired no better. She had the garden walls knocked down, the fountain plugged, even the old willow tree hacked to pieces. She did all this with a smile on her face and an unwaveringly airy disposition. Next, came me.
She made sure I saw everything, every last detail. She stood there bold as brass, hands on her hips and announced in a voice so sick as to be sweet exactly who she was, this woman who’d bought it all, my business, my home, myself.
“I’m your half-sister,” she purred.
“Uh-huh. The worst half.”
Father had never said a word, and now he never would, after all, she’d disposed of him first. Apparently, it hurt less than the cat, and on the plus side, saved me a job.
It was an unfortunate situation, she and I, an overlong affair. We had our good times, or hours, or first moments, which were longer than most. I should have counted myself lucky, really. Honestly, I should. But I didn’t, and neither did she. Shame! After all, she was my mother.