Run, Run to the Trap Door in my Mind

She is a little girl, maybe six or so, with unbrushed dark hair and always in a white nightgown that goes just below her knees. Barefoot, her tiny feet whisper padded footsteps as she runs about in my mind, playing and skipping and curious of any skeletons I have hidden in closets and long-forgotten memories thick with dust.

When I am upset, or angry and fighting tears she comes to me in my thoughts. I see her look scared and apprehensive, slowly putting down whatever she has found to be ready to run. As the lump in my throat grows, ready to burst into a sob or scream, she becomes frantic.

Angrily I scream at her, pushing her toward the closest door in my thoughts, her bare feet running in quick strides down the corridor of my mind.

Doors slam behind her one by one.

I send her downstairs and through rooms and scream at her to go, so I can sit quietly. So I can be numb.

Her white nightgown fades to a pale speck in the darkness as she retreats to the furthest corners to hide.

A strange emptiness takes her place and my thoughts are quiet. I am just a shell while she waits for me to forget my fear. Somewhere dark and cold she sits, humming a tune, picking at the hem of her nightgown.

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