The Ghost Who Lives in My Closet
By Mina Chao
There’s a ghost who lives in my closet. You know, the kind that looks like white bed sheets draped over a toddler’s head, not like those whitewashed zombies or translucent inflatables. He’s been there as long as I can remember and has never left. Most of the time, I ignore him, but sometimes I look into his two black eyes and stare as if looking into them would bring me answers. On other days, when I attempt to talk with him, he only echoes my words softly, as if he were only learning to speak.
I am not sure if I am scared of the ghost or if he is scared of me, or if both are true at the very same time. Once, I had to rearrange the coat hangers, and he moved to the opposite side of the closet from me and shrunk into the corner. Another time, he let out the loudest scream I’ve ever heard him produce and then proceeded to hide in the corner again. In some ways, he reminds me of a toddler throwing a fit after not receiving their candy. That isn’t to say I don’t have my moments, too — his presence still catches me off guard from time to time. He’s always there, lurking in the shadows and staring holes into my back. Yet I can’t find it in me to close the closet doors.
You see, I think there’s a reason why the ghost stays in the closet even when the doors are wide open. Sometimes, I catch him staring out my window and into the distance, and his eyes are wide and round with something akin to longing. But every time I try to catch a glimpse of what he sees, I only find myself looking at the fallen leaves on the street and the naked trees on the sidewalk. I often wonder if outside the window he sees another world of ghosts just like him, and I wonder why he seems so hesitant to leave his place in the closet to join them. I once asked him why he never left, but he just stared at me with his big, round eyes and then returned his gaze to the window as if I hadn’t said anything at all.
There’s a ghost who lives in my closet, and someday he will leave this place and run rampant in the streets with his little ghost friends. Perhaps he will find a better friend and will spend his eternal death with them. In time, he will forget about this closet of peeling wall paint and piling dust, and he will forget about me and the endless stories I mumble at night, pretending they aren’t for him.
But until then, he and I will stay in this room together, quietly observing the outside from our little window. Until then, it’s just me and the ghost who lives in my closet.