“mental illness” the doctor said shaking his head noisily.
i was still young and wondered if something was rattling in his head.
after all she sounded more logical than he did and her head certainly did not rattle when she shook it.
but “that” would explain the voices she heard in the middle of the night.
“she must be sedated. she must be contained. … put in a place for her safety.”
“quiet!!!” I said to my head that was starting to rattle.
“for the time being she is safe, she will be under my care” I stated emphatically amidst the frowns and rattlings.
in time she removed herself from society and whatever cacophony of sound there had been was relieved by the sound of the birds and the animals that sought the peace in her gardens.
one day I removed myself to the gardens for some clean air and thought.
“they have been poisoning you for years” she said without nary a comment on my part
“how did you know?” I had known for some time myself.
“i can smell it and the voices told me.”
“breathe the air here and in time your head will cease to rattle.
in three months I was clear
i fed the creatures from my hand during my hiatus
the voices started going away
when I returned I found it
well actually them:
an inconspicuous bottle with an ancient name written in Latin
at her house i read the book that had told me about a poison used on a fictional character using this same substance
and the book titled “ convince them they are mad ”
i got a call from my husband’s doctor “time for your annual checkup”
i knew if I stopped hearing the voices telling me to flee i would be out of my mind