(For reasons that only OS understands, it won't allow me to upload photos this morning. To see graphic, nude photos of the dead baby doll please visit jeff-howe.net. Also new this morning: a repost of "Unorthodox Church of the Holy Moly (stories) and a new WTF? photo.)
The dead baby doll that guards my bonsai garden is not a doll carelessly lost in tall weeds or dropped from a child’s arms on a walk through the yard. It was not blown there by the wind or deposited by a flood. It was not flung off the back of a bouncing truck or lost in a snowy drift. This doll was not misplaced in any way.
This is a doll that was buried.
I found it a dozen years ago when I first bought the house and was digging along the side to create a garden. My shovel struck something that made a curious thumping. Suddenly bright colored pieces of toy plastic came to the surface… almost the entire grave came up in one heaping shovel-full.
The baby lay there motionless, grinning, beckoning me to pick it up. “Pa-Pa” it seemed to say, eyes twinkling, pudgy arms extended. I am powerless in those sorts of situations.
As surely as a corpse, it was buried face up, with a small shard of blanket to wrap it. The Kleenex box-sized grave held small toys, trinkets, and doll paraphernalia – provisions for the dolly afterlife. The grave contents have been lost over the years but the baby has always remained, in a prominent place of honor.
Darkened and peeling, the dead baby doll is now the commodore of the bonsai fleet. It is the wise old owl that lives in the rafters and watches over all. “Whooooo…. whooooo?” it is sometimes heard to moan.
But most of all, the dead baby doll rides upon the wind chimes that hang from the trellis - the long chimes measuring the breeze and playing the melody that defines the day.
Ding. Bong. Ka-ding.
But it is the baby doll, not the wind, that is responsible for which notes play and in what order . When the dead baby doll feels a twitch of B-flat… it is B-flat that suddenly fills the air.
Long live the dead baby doll.
©2012 – Jeff L. Howe, all rights