Infinite worlds, infinite possibilities. Life, like a string on a guitar, vibrating new alternatives.
She was afraid. It happens all the time like this. The crow makes its noise in the distance, beckoning her into the forest nearby. It says he’s waiting for her.
Placing her ukulele down beside her, she hushes her child as she lays in her crib. Looking over, she stares at me, causing her to stop in her tracks.
The doll. This doll was my mother’s favorite kind. She had one as well at some point in time. She said it will take away all your fear. Even when you’re down, ridden with despair.
The doll looked at me, but unintentionally; after all, it was just a doll. In some worlds, dolls don’t look purposefully at anything… But in whose world was I?
I wrap her up securely against my chest, before pursuing the crow’s call into the wilderness.
“Your father awaits us, love,” I say in a cooing manner.
Little Fear looks up to me with those doe-eyes.
I am afraid however, Grandmother said Little Fear comforts in these moments of confusion, sapping away our own fear as her fuel.
Trudging through the brushes and swatting the branches away, I make sure not to trip over fallen trunks. Soon emerging into a meadow where he sat, looking upon us as we neared.
Holding her, I began to rock her to and fro, to and fro.
“Father of Fear is here,” I sweetly sang to her.
He soon stood and approached, his dark stature looming above me.
“As well as the mother of death…” he whispered in my ear, then kissed me on my forehead.
Outstretching his arms, he gestured with his hands for me to hand her over, but as soon as I was about to, I heard a cry that dolls shouldn’t cry in other worlds.
The sound of sirens began to engulf me.
“STEP AWAY FROM THE CHILD!”
“BETHANY! WHAT ARE YOU DOING!?”
The sound of a ukulele. Such a pleasant sound. Why did I ever put it down?
I turned to see who could be calling me. As I turned around, my surroundings changed. I now stood upon a cliff top with grey skies overhead, the wind blowing, rippling through my dress. A little girl stood closer to the edge, holding a doll that looked oh-so familiar.
“Mom, don’t do this!” the little girl cried out with tears as she slowly edged towards the cliff.
“My child! You were just a baby-- and, and, your father, he needs to hold you in his arms!”
Time began to slow and the winds began to calm. With unwanted realization, serenity overtook my heart. I fell to my knees as the police charged the scene and took me into custody.
Looking out of the car window, I saw my child with an officer. The doll remained in her hand, it’s glass eyes staring emptily at mine.
Whose world was I in?
I touched my knees with my hands. Scrapes from the stony cliff edge ran bumply across my fingers. I felt something strange. Something clumpy but soft. I grabbed a piece and looked at it. It was cotton. My hands, mittens. I could not move, I could not think. I looked ahead but unintentionally, because after all dolls don’t look purposefully at anything in particular…
I sat there in my mother’s rocking chair. She looked at me from across the room and smiled, soon wrapping me tightly to her chest. She began to rock back and forth in the chair as the cries of her own ensued.
“Little Fear...you always take my fears away, comforting me in these moments of confusion. Just like mother, grandmother, and great grandmother would say. Take my dreams, my loneliness, my emptiness. Take it all away.”
I listened...but can a doll even listen?
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