rot

Sitting by the heater with no pants on. Gran would say I’m a product of a spoiled society. She’d slam the switch on the wall and command me to go do something useful if I needed warming up.

Gran grew up during the war. It left her cold, with a damp, moldy soul. That’s what I used to think when I was a kid, anyway. Her house was always musty, there were flecks of nastiness in the carpet and her dog was as mean as her Sunday lunch portions. His name was Winston, and as I grew older I realized the connection and resented him even more. When I was little, I used to picture Gran’s insides rotting away with dank misery. I imagined I could smell it whenever she embraced me- a lingering musk of pure badness that manifested as a malodorous dew on my sweater. I hated her, and I didn’t even know it. I knew I was afraid of her, but it took me so long to understand that my fear was simply a subsidiary of my hatred that she was dead before I was able to say it to her face. She’d have relished it, too. Because there was something I understood about Gran that the rest of the family never seemed to see. She hated us back. When my mother and aunties stepped (falsely eager and plainly so) into her arms at the front door, she’d wince with distaste. She seemed to celebrate my petrified glare with a kind of frozen triumph, as though it pleased her that her very being horrified me to my innocent core.

On the days that I can bring myself to think of her I wonder what it was she had done, what guilt rode upon that conscience that was so bitter it consumed the very soul it tortured?

rot

nnimus3

Joined August 2008

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