Words ©2017 Barbara Renel                              Images ©2017 Paul Taylor

The Box Room

When she was young it was the sick room, post-war green painted walls you could chalk on, where you were quarantined if ill. She’d sit at the open window singing to the house next door – she loved folk tales.

 

It became the junk room and then the spare bedroom with soft curtains that caught the breeze and a wall of vertical and horizontal stacks like an elaborate I Ching hexagram; photo albums recording lives lived, games to play when she visited with her children, books belonging to her mother, who knows the rest of this dedication, December 1939 – a life that might have been?

 

She’d slept there, sharing the room with her parent’s ashes – two caskets, one on top of the other. ‘Do you mind?’ her sister had asked.

 

She closes the door on the room – four walls, one window – empty full.