Welcome Home dear

Although I couldn’t see, something told me I wasn’t alone in the cellar. This was my cellar, the place for my taters and rutabaga. There were shelves where I put up my peaches, my pickled watermelon, and my mama’s special apple butter. This is my cellar and I love its cool quiet walls.
I can’t see but I know this house. It was my home in my way. It had been Erasmus’ of course. But I kept it for him and made the curtains and the quilts. I scrubbed it top to bottom. My pretties, a ceramic frame of my folks, a porcelain goose my brother won for me at the state fair, a trio of bud vases, a china doll baby, used to line the shelves. I wish I could touch them again. I feel a soft stirring in the cellar far corner.
After Erasmus hurt me bad that last time I was confused. I couldn’t talk to anyone. I couldn’t scream. I was used to that.
My husband kept me on a short lease. When we were courting his attention was hungry. Everything about me was precious to him. He couldn’t bear to share me. I forgot my lonesome forgot my mourning in his arms.
Mama told me he was all kinds of trouble, my daddy wouldn’t shake his hand, and my brothers were fixing to whup him. Do we got married. I couldn’t see Erasmus until after the honeymoon. He started to hit me and I could do nothing right. After the last time he hurt me I was confused because Erasmus was so happy.
My world grew smaller and smaller. The days ran into each other. Then I realized what Erasmus had done. I wanted my mama. We were close as sisters, so close we shared dreams and secrets. But all I had was this house.
Erasmus was gone. They took him away. And all I had were these rooms to myself. Now I’m not alone with my memories of my pretties, with the grief of the baby I wanted to have, with my rage. I feel who is here. My anger rumbles. Erasmus. Erasmus with the gallows mark on his throat that matches the hand marks on mine. A growl rises from my core. Erasmus is confused. I am a beast. This is my house now.

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