My mother was a moth before she was a woman. In her short life as a moth, she met my father after a night of storms. She followed him day and night. She knew she couldn’t have him unless she became one of his kind, with hands and legs and a mouth with which she could kiss or whisper soothing words. So, she found this young woman who she entered through the nose and expanded inside of, until she became one with her. Soon after, my mother married my father and she birthed me. The woman who the vessel belonged to remained there, tucked in a corner of the skull. Mother felt her presence manifesting inside the body on rare occasions—a few times, at night, Mother found herself not in her bed, but wandering outside people’s houses, peeking inside, sobbing whilst she watched children sleeping. There was one time when the woman sharing that body with my mother tried to drown some children living across the street by forcing their heads into a sink full of water. Eventually, the woman gave up, as she had figured my mother was stronger, and she hasn’t made her presence felt ever since.
4 thoughts on “The account of a moth mother”
Succinct story, Liliana. Its berevity works well. So, is the mother a saviour-type figure?? But…before she goes off saving other peoples’ children, can we see her marriage succeed or fail? Also, can we see her relationship with her child develop or fail to? Anyway, why does the mother/saviour want to save other peoples’ children, in the first place? Questions that need answering:)
First, I want to thank you for taking the time to read my story – it means a lot! This text was part of a longer piece, but I wanted to experiment with it so I extracted this section and gave it a life of its own.
I’m not sure about the quality of the mother (is she a saviour-type figure or not, what are her intentions, did she have a successful marriage and a good relationship with her children?) as she came out straight from my subconscious, almost in a haunting way. I’d like to answer your questions with a continuation of this short story. Let’s hope the moth mother agrees. 🙂
Maybe you paired it down too much? I recently brought my novella word count down from 27,000 words to 17,000 words. Let’s see what my editor makes of that?? 🤩
Did the child add to, or take away from, the marriage, for instance? I have slight reference to moths in my novella btw 😎
Will the moth get trapped in a wardrobe or cupboard and eat up all the nicely knitted woolen jumpers? Or will the house keeper smack her palm against the moth, as it rests on a warm wall, and thus extinguish all life. ( Forgive that fantasising – it’s from my novella!!)
The original story from where I cut this fragment was around 3,000 words long. I do want to write longer pieces again, hopefully for a possible collection of short stories, but I’m planning to post only short pieces on here. Some will make more sense, I promise 🙂
Oh wow, that’s impressive! Did you find it difficult to cut so much out of it? How interesting that you’re writing a novella. What is it about? I would like to write something that elaborate one day, although it’s a hard skill, isn’t it? Requires a specific kind of consistency, I think.
I’m curious to read your novella when it’s out. I’m elated to hear that you have a reference to moths, even if slightly. I’ll gather with mine and find out more about their intentions, but I hope they’ll stay away from my clothes. At least, for now.