Stranger

In my house

there is a girl impersonating my sister.

She speaks like my sister,

breathes like my sister,

her body is in the languid shape of my sister.

But she is not her.

 

At night I see her body change shape,

morphing into something more like my own.

I do not know where she has come from,

or what she wants,

or how I can expose her

fragile disguise.

 

When I look in the mirror, I see her

as my sister and as myself,

a confusion of us both.

An easy mistake to make.

 

I tell people there is someone impersonating my sister.

I tell my parents.

I tell my friends.

I put up posters with photos of my sister,

a “missing” mugshot on trees and lampposts.

 

My friends ask if I’m okay.

They have never met my sister.

My parents look at me with sad eyes.

They do not say anything about my sister.

They hold my hand, pat my back, look at me as though

I am very ill.

 

There is a girl in my house

who is impersonating my sister.

Sometimes she impersonates me and no one seems to notice or care.

Rochelle is a writer from London. She was recently shortlisted for Streetcake magazine's Experimental Writing prize. Her work has been published on Dear Damsels as well as CityVoice 2017 and Wells Muse.

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