Five things that you might find shocking


My mother lies about having cancer.

Given her history and her desperate need for attention that's not so shocking.

I wasn't the first one she told. My father, who left her again, and my aunt called to pass on the information later that day, after she´d told them not to tell anyone else. Them telling me shortly afterwards isn't so shocking either. I am now the cauldron of our family. 

I told them she was probably lying.

She calls me twice a day begging me to listen to her empty things

hoping I will catch on and ask her what the real issue is. I never do.

After a couple of days she told me about having cancer. She did so because she was afraid my aunt or my father would tell me before she did. I said oh no.

That's so sad. She knows shes dying. Most drunks are. 

When I told her that I in fact had spoken to her on the phone that same morning she (according to my dad, my aunt and now herself) allegedly had gone for treatment, she told me she had lied about being at home doing nothing and that she had actually been on the train. I didn't tell her that I had called on the house-phone. Instead I said oh no, that's so sad that you have to go through this all by yourself. 

I had hoped it wasn't a lie.



I dug up the body of my deceased guinea pig buried in the garden.

It was such a great pet, a true cuddly friend. 

He died while I was away for a week leaving him in my mothers care. She told me he had caught a cold and died, and that she´d buried him in the garden.

I didn't believe her. I remembered that she had said the same thing about my hamster that died when I was five. Then I caught her throwing a cigarette-filter box too gently in the trashcan. 

I dug the guinea pig up. There were fluids with unpleasant smell appearing first, in small streams. Then there were pieces of hair and something that looked like badly cooked chicken meat.

I didn't eat chicken for at least ten years after that.

I put a wooden stick on his grave with his name written in ink.

His name was Alf. He was a good pet.



I once saw a retarded kid being smashed by a car. It was kinda my fault.

He was my friend that summer. He was two years older than me, but acted two years younger.

I still liked him. He was awkward and sweet. 

It was a hot summer day and we rode our bikes down to the motor way. To the junction under the steel bridge.

It was a place where commuters passed on their way to the city and back to the suburbs. 

I knew our neighbours dog had been killed here. I told him the rotting body of the dachshund was still out there, now as a road pattern and you could still see his flat body. 

He wanted to see it and rode his bike straight into traffic. A car hit him hard.

I remember the odd way his head tilted the fragmented second before the car hit him. 

He had been hit by a car before, when he was two. That's why he was a bit retarded.

This time he died. He was my friend. I did cry.



I'm not a phone-person. I hardly ever return calls. But besides my lonely mother not that many call anymore. Its ok. I need clean new people without those dragging expectations people seem to get after you've known them for a short period of time.

I often sit up drinking until 3 a.m. Sometimes I think about that guy I met in my early twenties. He walked into a pub where I was trying to get rid of this pestering friend of mine that talked to loud. It turned out that he knew this friend, they were from the same town. Not that he liked this friend. This friend is the kind who get mocked all through his life and one doesn't feel bad about it.

I was embarrassed to be seen with this bug of a friend, but at the same time , thats how I got to meet this other man. His James Dean ways hit me over my drunken forehead  and I instantly knew this was my only husband ever to be. 

Drunk and quirky as I was I got him to share a cab with me. I didn't like that his coolness was so superior to mine, but the attraction was brutal. He liked quirky.

I had to have him.

I left him a sticky kiss and my glove in his pocket. I texted him the next day. He wrote back, untouchable poetically. I like flaws. He had none. He was a genius. I hated him. I had to have him.

He went back to his town where he was a star, he sent me short messages that pierced through my soft spot and hit my anger. The boy used his few words with  a kind of precision that made you know that writing was not simply within his field of interest.

Then one day he sent me a package. It contained a red lollipop, a letter and my glove. I instantly deleted his number.

I took the train , eight hours with my glove in my pocket. I had his address torn off the package in my hand the whole time.

It was almost midnight when my cab pulled up to his apartment building. I felt dizzy and overheated when I finally stood outside his door. 

His mother answered. I had the look of a killer, she knew I was a killer and tried to close the door in my face. I was quicker. I grabbed her wrist bending it backwards , it was tiny. She screamed. Calling his name. 

Then he appeared behind her with his calm look. He did look a bit sad.

I killed him.


Sometimes at night when I stay up drinking I think of him.

What our children would have looked like.

How he would kiss me as soon as he walked through our door.


Wondering if he still lives with his mother.

Short story by Lourdes
Read 1286 times
Written on 2009-06-22 at 15:27

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Rob Graber
Enigmatic and gripping...

PS: Nice to see you resurface here!

liz munro The PoetBay support member heart!
Instead of shocking, this
makes me feel sad but
I like the way you have written it.