Psychopomp Magazine Spring 2016 - Page 30

have left. In the new moon darkness, our treehouse could be just the same as it was yesterday. In the darkness, nothing has to be how it really is. We sit at the base of our oak tree, and for the first time, we do not wonder, what now? Our feathers fall like snowflakes through the backs of our shirts, fluttering, gracefully, to the ground below. For the first time, we do not wonder at all.

Rachel stands, looking up at our tree, and she grabs onto the ladder. She begins to climb, though the ladder hangs limp and icy with water from the fire hoses. Julie says nothing, she has said her piece. We watch Rachel navigate the remains of our treehouse. Boards break off and fall; the soggy cover of Witchcraft for Beginners lands at my feet. We watch her grab onto a branch and swing her legs around it, her back to us. We hear her knitted sweater ripping open and watch what's left of her wings unfurl in the darkness. They have lost all their feathers and are only outlines now: jagged shadows that creak with the sound of bone on bone as they move. We will stay here, in this skeleton world of bone and barren branch. ♦

30 | Psychopomp Magazine