The Fences

This is my PROMPTuesday submission for this week. My writing group started back up last night and I made the commitment to do my own prompts — something I’ve neglected to do for a year. So here we go…


She first appeared as my mother’s twin when I was seven. I heard her gravel voice echoing in our white-picket-fenced, flat yellow home and walked through every room to find her. I searched everywhere — under the bed, behind the rocking horse, in the hall — but found only remnants, a scarf, an earring, a high-heeled shoe. Alone and young, I settled back into bed and be-deviled and haunted, pulled the covers over my head. That’s when her familiar outline appeared through the thin sheet. I didn’t move, didn’t take even a breath as she yanked my protection aside.


Then I was in the bathroom. Her back faced me, and I watched in the mirror as she sat on a velvet-cushioned stool, applied deep red lipstick, and smacked her mouth. This was my mother, this was my mother. I said it desperately, hopefully, under my breath. My mother, my mother. She turned slowly as if on a lazy susan and when I caught glimpse of her I knew I’d never be safe again.


And I wasn’t. For years and years and still.


A raven witch pulling me into a sharp cave, scratching me to near death with amber fingernails, a neighbor in an abandoned home chasing me with a cache of serrated knives, a shapeshifting owl or fanged cat. Each time, every time, I end up running away, over fences and fences and fences. Always fences. Always her.


For years and years and still.


7 Responses to “The Fences”

  1. Ooh, this just sucks me in!

  2. Crystal says:

    OK…I have goosebumps and the creepies now.

  3. Man, outlines appearing through thin sheets freaks me out. Keep your eyes shut, that’s what I’d do. Then you won’t see the outline. And don’t look under the bed either, just in case.

  4. Mama Mary says:

    Whoa Nelly! Shapeshifting owls & fanged cats. Girl, you can write. And you are tormented. If those images are real in your dreams, I am sorry.
    My fave line: “Her back faced me.” You are genius. xo

  5. Holey Moley, that’s a strange one! (But brilliantly written!)

  6. mommypie says:

    I read this post thinking it was titled “Feces.” And kept wondering when the scary poo was going to turn up.

    (On a serious note — chills, Mama!)

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