Shelter

When my husband left to join the other army, I built a house for my children in the ground. I filled it with canned food and firewood, and I made a chimney deep in the trees where no one could see the smoke. I made the roof out of lead to keep the bombs away, and I made the door with no handle on the outside. I told my children to get their favorite toys, so Sarah took her marionettes, and Rebecca took her guillotine, and they followed me out into the yard.

“You are the mother now,” I said to Sarah as I showed them their new home.

“Who is the father?” Rebecca asked.

“Your father is Jesus,” I said.

Rebecca cried, but Sarah shushed her, and I kissed them both and kissed Sarah’s marionettes, and then they went inside and I put earth and grass over the door. Then I lay down on the roof of my children’s home and watched the sky bleed.

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