For Your October Reading, A Ghost Story About Grief

Image by Jesse Bowser

Image by Jesse Bowser

Last month, The Dark published ‘Some Breakable Things,‘ a story by author Cassandra Khaw. In it, a daughter confronts the ghost of her father, a ghost of abusive relationships, suicidality, guilt, and hunger.

“Go away.”

Your father only stares as you crumple against the steam-slick wall, as you contract into a ball on floor, hands in your hair. Somewhere in the last five days, he lost his fear of proximity, replaced it with an intensity that both frightens and depresses you. Now, he squats an inch from your face. As you look between the kelp-tangle of your hair, you see him reach out, long fingers stretched to brush your cheeks.

“Go away!”

Your scream erodes his silhouette, reduces him to ashes on an ocean wind, to a shimmer in the cold fluorescent light, and then, like he never existed in the first place, a delusion given substance by an ill-attended grief, he is suddenly and irrefutably gone.

Read the full story over at The Dark. It’s a sharp-edged imagining of how unresolved trauma can haunt us, and it’s well-worth the read.

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