On el Dia de los Muertos, the Puppet Feels

She births me on el Dia de los Muertos, stuffs me with hope and stitches me up… with deeds.

“Hope isn’t hard to find,” she says, “the thing grows wild out of the eyeballs of young children, and steady in the far stares of well-lived adults, who understand that ends are just new kinds of beginnings. The deeds, well… those take work and pain and blood.”

“It does hurt,” I say, clenching the painted cloth of my teeth against the jabbing pain, rubbing the crimsoned stitches she is using to secure the hope of young and old to the inside of my chest.

“I know.” She cuts the spare thread with her teeth, and kisses the top of my head, before taking a step back to smile at newly born me. Her lips are bloodied. Red has trickled down to her chest.

“You are dirty,” I say, pointing at the cloth that covers her heart.

She unbuttons the top of her dress, revealing fresh ragged stitches that mirror my own, and says, “Dirty? No, just paying the price for hope, for life.”

“I’m sorry,” I say with a smirk, knowing the crooked lines of my mouth morph the gesture into a creepy thing.

“Be not sorry, and live,” she tells me. Her smile is a red kick in the face of impossible.

She births me every Dia de los Muertos. And she stuffs me with hope which she bleeds for me.
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the wee notes…
– This bit of fiction was born out of my need to know why the Puppet in “Dance, Old Bones” had such a creepy smirk on her face. I guess now we know—most of us cringe at needles… but some of us (since we know we must) smirk in Pain’s face, showing a menacing amount of teeth.
– Linked to Incipient Wings’ Haunted Humpday.

puppet-detail-from-spelling-healing-into-a-rotting-world-by-sunshineshelledetail, from “Spelling Healing into a Rotting World”, by SunshineShelle

37 thoughts on “On el Dia de los Muertos, the Puppet Feels

  1. This is absolutely spot on and manages to be gruey and delightful at the same time. There is a cost for everything, and a pain to ever birth, yet without it, we are not alive. the feeling of nurture and even intimacy between doll-person and creator is magical. I especially love “…Her smile is a red kick in the face of impossible..”

  2. Whistles!!❤️❤️This is deliciously dark and enticing, Magaly 😀 I love how you describe her inner strength and emotion… and oh the image of buoyant and blooming hope in “She births me every Dia de los Muertos. And she stuffs me with hope which she bleeds for me” sigh.. beautifully executed. Thank you so much for linking this gem with Prompt Nights❤️❤️

    Lots of love,
    Sanaa

  3. I don’t know why I find the idea of putting the stuffing in little bodies to be so creepy.

    A few years ago, there was a CGI film called “9” that had little badly stitched dolls that had souls in their stuffing and even though it sort of looked like a kids film, they all ended up dying and the souls leaving them.

    I think that film might have changed my view of stuffed dolls.

    Anyway, this was effective, maybe because if the baggage I brought to it!

    • I think most of the population freaks out a bit at the thought of stitches on flesh (even if the latter is being mimicked by cloth at the time) and at the idea of innards being stuffed into a body.

  4. Wham bamm Thank you Ms Wicked… Woo this was inspiring, you talented amazing creator you, blew me away, totally, birthing life to grining dolls and images “She cuts the spare thread with her teeth” the placenta severed, “she bleeds for me” I got teary, “paying the price for hope, for life”… I need to agree with you… you are f-ing awesome (yes maybe even ‘freaking’ awesome as well)… looooooovvvvveeeeeeeee this & u!!!

  5. From the voice of the poppet!!!!!! What a way to deliver a lesson. From the bloodied lips to the bandage on the maker’s heart, as Rommy said, tenderly macabre. The line “Her smile was a red kick in the face of impossible” is an affirmation that I want to remember forever!

  6. This is creepy, Ms. Magaly witchy woman. It is on the par with something S. King might write, or no, no, more like Mr. Poe. Perhaps Edgar is your muse?

    • I’ve enjoyed several of King’s works and I love everything Poe created. And, as you might’ve noticed, I like my writing like I like my people: dark bits exposed and alive with blood. 😉

      Hm… I might have to quote myself on that last bit, lol!

  7. “Be not sorry, and live” If only we would all remember this as we plod through life bemoaning our fate. That creepy smile on the doll is good advice for us to laugh at every adversity, we will get over it quicker if we do. What a lot we learn from each other’s writing.

    • Indeed. If we don’t laugh at adversity, then it laughs at us… and we all now that adversity’s teeth are much more scarier.

      And yes, I think we learn so much from each other’s writings… and I love that. 🙂

  8. How did I miss this???
    I was going through my e-mails and I had this post marked that I read it! I did not! Bad Stacy!
    I think your words for this story are so beautiful! So touching!!! “She unbuttons the top of her dress, revealing fresh ragged stitches that mirror my own, and says, “Dirty? No, just paying the price for hope, for life.”
    Love!!!
    Big Hugs 🙂 (You and Shelle’s art sing together!)

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