We laid down Anna Belle today for good. Mary cried, but she didn’t do all the things I thought she might. Then we carted her little casket over to the cemetery and placed it in a hole. Mary cried a little bit there, too, but still she didn’t do nothing drastic. Like I wrote before, Mary had taken immediately to talking strangely about the event, of how Anna Belle walked outside and why. She blamed the Densmore sisters down the hill for causing Anna Belle to leave the house at night since one day Anna Belle walked down the road and ended up in their kitchen. She was only four. That was last year. The sisters brought her right back, but first they cleaned her up a little and put something on a little rash she’d developed from poison oak along the way. The night before last Mary walked down to the Densmore house and took all her clothes off and started screaming “Witches Witches Witches.” The ladies didn’t come out. I heard her when she changed her chant to high pitched screams. I ran as fast as I could to the Densmore place and I grabbed my wife and put a gag around her mouth, but she bit it off and started screaming “witches” again. I had no choice but to strike my own wife. She went soft like a rag and I carried her home. One of the Densmore sisters came out and asked if there was anything she could do and I said no and apologized. The other one was afraid beyond all explanation of fear is what that one sister told me, because that other sister was very superstitious and said prayers to trees and the sky and maybe she thought that she’d made the universe mad enough about something that It had lain a spell upon my daughter and caused her to do what she did. I thanked the one sister for her help and told her that I didn’t think any kind of hocus pocus was strong enough to cause a girl to lose her life like my Anna Belle did. So I took Mary home, but nobody will ever know if Anna Belle was walking to the sisters’ house.
It doesn’t matter much anymore. The doctor gave Mary something and she’s sleeping peacefully now, but I’m not sure what it is that ‘s going to take place in her head in the next few months. I’m overwhelmed right now and searching for answers from God. Mary told me yesterday that she doesn’t believe in God anymore and I told her she was foolish for thinking that, but, deep down, I wondered myself, and I got me out a bottle of whiskey and sat there by myself and wondered and wondered and wondered. I’m still wondering tonight. Maybe tomorrow I’ll get an answer. I don’t know. I gotta quit. I hear Mary stirring.
It wasn’t nothing. Mary’s sleeping sound, but I don’t remember where I was going. I know it had to do with Anna Belle and Mary. We might have to quit this mountain. Since the war everything has gone to hell. I still got a little bit of money, but I told the doctor about how Mary’s been acting and he said it don’t sound good. He said I should keep an eye on her and if it looks like she’s addled that I should call him. Mary’s addled for sure. I know that. You just don’t know what’s going on inside of her head anymore. I guess she loved Anna Belle more than even I knew, but love don’t explain why someone would want to go and give up their own life when one life’s been lost already. I guess she depended on Anna Belle. Hell, I did too, but I don’t want to go taking off my clothes and running naked down the road to the Densmore sisters’ house. That’s not right. If anything at all the only thing that’s changed with me since Anna Belle died is that I drink a little bit more than I used to. It helps take the pain away. I’ve had too much pain. I don’t want any more pain. Pain hurts.
That’s five drinks so far. Got a good number more left in this bottle. It’s kind of better to be lost like this than to have to think about my life. I’m sleepy though. Goodnight for now, journal.