There were five of us kids. I can use real names here because in our family real names are just for birth certificates. Except for me, Kitty is my real name. My mom almost named me Katrina. I used to wish she had named me that. I wanted a proper name to put on important papers. Damn good thing she didn’t.
Saying “I have four brothers” was always good to make conversation. “I have three brothers” just doesn’t sound like it’s going to start anything. I’m not ready to say, “But I used to have four.” I know where that conversation will drag me.
I’d like to say I’m a lone griever, but, well, look, you’re reading this on the world wide web. I could be writing from a storm cellar, though.
James, the oldest found Shane that day. James is underwater, in the storm surge. He’s got a life preserver on but hasn’t figured out which button to press to inflate the thing. He’ll come up.
Lorne is a tropical storm, spinning out there. Doesn’t seem dangerous, but you never know. He never gets the attention he deserves.
Robert is a tornado. Came into town unexpectedly, left Mommie a bunch of mean sticky notes because he was locked out of her house. A trail of uprooted trees, that boy.
Mommie is my mom. She’s unusually calm and normal right now which is abnormal. Her whole life is a cat 5 storm and always full of overdramatics. Which I miss.
Me, I’m watching for the birds and small animals to leave town. High tides. Just watching.
This is an old photo I got from the house, and yes, I got it before that big fire. It always looked like this. Except for a few years back, I sketched in the missing lower corner. I should have sketched James in there while I was at it (he spent that summer at my grandparents).
Mommie made these old fashioned bathing suits for a costume contest. We won. This is the photo they put in the newspaper.
Robert is the baby, I am the only girl, Lorne is holding the balloon, and Shane is to my left with Mommie’s hand on his ear.
Here’s another photo and has my dad in it. But Lorne is looking away.
And I could swear that blonde headed boy to my left is the guy I married because he looked just like that back then and came from the same town. He says it’s not him.