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Snow White Redux

Snow White in the Glass Box

Time is relative here. Sometimes I count out the seconds, but starting from anytime and counting to a hundred, a thousand, as high as I can go without losing track of digits. It just makes the space feel bigger, longer, unfathomable and unending. But it will end. I’m not dead, yet.

I’ve replayed memories in my mind so many times that I’ve started to entertain myself by changing them – the characters, the situations, and me. I’ve imagined this narrator’s voice, and this audience. I’m really just bored by my self.

I keep coming back to the number seven. There were seven little men, I remember that pretty clearly. Seven days in a week. There’s probably some symbolism there, but to me seven seems pretty arbitrary.
Not like three. Three is in everything: my father, my mother, and me. Three drops of blood. Three times my stepmother tried to kill me. That’s how I got here. I don’t remember that clearly at all, but I know it was her. Pfft. Bitch.

Mostly I imagine what I’ll do when I get out of here – assuming there’s a way out that isn’t death or starting over. Maybe forgetting all this would be for the best. I’m tired of keeping my thoughts so orderly.

This place is big. So big I don’t ever see all the rooms. And there are people here I see and never see again. Especially the ones with the desperate faces who come to see my father.
I don’t listen, but I watch them to see if he gives them what they want, or what they need. There’s a real difference. When they get what they want, they leave looking smug – as if they never had to ask someone else to give it to them. When they get what they need, they look disappointed. It’s so annoying.
I want to yell at them and tell them how he has a lot of people to take care of, and he tries to give them all something without losing. That’s why he has the biggest chair – it holds the weight of all those burdens.
I know my father is not just a man. I wonder if I will ever love someone as much as I love him.

I thought beauty was supposed to make people love you. That’s not at all true. Beauty makes people love things, which reflect back on them. Beautiful people just remind you of all the ways you are not beautiful. It’s really just a commodity, I think.

I hope some day someone will look in my eyes and kiss me on the mouth, and it will mean something. Maybe it will mean love, but I really just want to belong to someone. And I want him to be proud because of it, and proud of me for giving myself to him.

The day her voice changed I could hear the hatred growing. Something shifted, and she didn’t want to try to be my mother anymore. That’s when I tried to please her, as if – now that I knew I never could – I could achieve something by it.
It wasn’t about giving me what I needed anymore. It was all about her, and she was so needy.

This place is so small, and everything in it. It feels so much safer, but suddenly I am the mother. The mother of seven little men who have no mother. I do all the things a mother is supposed to do, but I don’t love them.
They don’t need anything from me, and definitely not love. Their brotherhood is enough. It’s like they’re all one person, together.

I get scared when I get to the end of a thought. Like I’ll never think of anything again and just float in this box of air, nothingness, forever. That’s when I count, and eventually I think of something again.

Like two. Two makes me think of the future, out of this box. Someday I will be one of two – an us. A we. Like my mother and father were when they made me.
And two makes me think of her. Number two. The second – the other mother. The one who wanted to get rid of me – number three – so she could be just two with my father.
Two makes me wish for a sister. Or a brother, but a sister would understand when I wanted to hate her but couldn’t. A brother would always have him, and he would always get to leave without asking anybody.
If I ever get out of here, I’d like to have two kids. One for each of us; a girl to stay and love, a boy to leave and protect. And one other for each of them.

When I see him, I’ll know it right away. I wonder if he’ll feel that way, too?

I am flying over a waterfall – a big one that spans half the horizon. I swoop down with the falling water and then I’m just falling. I know I will hit those rocks, and then I don’t.

I run through stone corridors that turn but never end, and then I’m in a vaulted room that feels deep underground. I look around but the edges recede when I try to bring them into focus.

I’m in a crowd, but my father appears and the people part to let him come to me – but he doesn’t. I’m lost in the crush, even though I yell to him over and over. He wasn’t looking for me, even though I’m sure our eyes met.

[To be continued and improved...]

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