Ghosts Next Door

Ghosts Next Door
by Lopaka Kapanui

Apr 28, 2022

Peter 2022

 Little feet pattered across the wooden floor and then down the hallway to the bathroom.

The water to the sink went on, and singing and humming were heard. A Joni Mitchell song, I believe. For a child, the gurgling and the swishing of the mouth wash were vigorous. I loved the over-dramatic spitting of the water down the drain the most, along with the ever-present, "Aaaahhh!" It made me giggle. The pattering feet came running back down the hallway until it stopped at the couch where I lay. The back of the sofa is facing the hallway, so the feet gingerly approach the rest of the way, very slowly. I love this game because it's my chance to jump up and scare the bee-geezers out of little one. I affect a very overly dramatic groan until it crescendos into a high shrill scream. "Muuuaaaahhhhyeeeaaaaahhhh!" No one is there, no one. Just an empty spot and dead silence. I look toward the kitchen to see my little one sitting at the table, pouring cereal and milk into his bowl. My wife is there also, removing the bacon from the packet and setting it in the frying pan. I stand up from the sofa and look down the hallway, and there he is. The shadow of the son who was never born, the one that never got to grow up and be a boy, like his younger brother. Like the pan, we named him Peter, hoping that he could exist in his own Neverland because he hadn't had the fortune to live in this world. 


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