My Name

Someone is prowling around the borders of my name. They have been there for days. I can't see them or hear them because in the house of my name is a room of silence and a huge window of fog. But I know they are there. My name is certified in a gold frame that hangs on the room's wall. Everytime they move, it shakes.

At first I didn't worry. But now they have begun rubbing their sleeve over my name's glass. They are rubbing in circles that are gradually widening. I scream that they can't do this and repeatedly show them the gold frame. They take no notice. They keep on rubbing. They rub until the fog disappears and their face becomes visible.

Now, I am afraid for my name's safety. The frame is shaking more rapidly though I have set up all conceivable defences. I have padded my name's wall with photos of myself. I have entered my name on lists. I have dispatched letters in all possible directions.

Nothing is working. They have broken through my name's door and are wandering the secret passageways as if everything's already familiar. Perhaps they are a lost relative? When I question them they glare sharply as if to say ‘who do you think you are?' I run to get them the gold frame. I look for it on the wall but all that's hanging there is this person's coat, dusty and torn.

When I return I find the locks on my name's door have been changed and I can go neither in nor out. I cannot yell help.

~ Judith Beveridge

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