The Ghost of Alonzo

02 Jun

     After a late Easter Vigil Mass; Alonzo and I crept and crawled under the beds of sleeping friends in the “Big Boys” dormitory at the Orphanage. Sister St. Jean was in her rocking chair sound asleep. Hearing her snore, was our cue to slip out of our beds, stuff the pillows under the blankets to make it look, from a distance, we were still asleep.

     Shushing each other with a finger over our lips we doubled checked Sister St. Jean, to see if she was still there, in the creaking rocking chair. She was assigned every other Friday night to guard the dormitory room. We knew, as usual on that night, that she would be out like a light before the first shine of the moon. We had her in our first class that morning, when the first bell rang.

     Waiting for her infamous rhythmic bass sound, and the silence of the chair on opposite sides of the well-lit hallway, divided by the Holy snore, in its silence, we met. Pointing at the doubled doors, which were opened for the warm spring air and the moon that was brightly illuminating the escaping concrete stairs.

    We tiptoed down, hanging on to each other’s hands and the other on the rails. Then we ran independently through wet grass with our heels sticking slightly into the mud of the warm spring garden before we climbed the fence between the two brick walls. I chipped my tooth as I fell on the other side. Alonzo picked me up, shook my hand and never saying good-bye, continued to run past me as he was waving one arm.

     Looking around, finding myself outside, I walked the long block around the orphanage at least twenty or thirty times. Circling many times, I was getting to know my way better each time. Eventually I understood and had to resign, that I had no place to go, now. And the sun was beginning to rise after my adventure that began after sundown. I knocked on the front door where I once entered several years ago, to go back, again inside. As I went in, walking back to the dormitory, I could hear the corridors murmur, “he has found away to leave here”.

They will serve my meal

I have found the heart of thorns

                                     may I find the way.


Stood the Archangel

with the serpent under foot

                                          handing me her sword.


Posted by on June 2, 2018 in Existential, Haibun, Prose/Short Story, religion, Zen


Tags: , , , ,

16 responses to “The Ghost of Alonzo

  1. ZQ

    June 5, 2018 at 5:44 pm

    : -)


  2. ZQ

    June 5, 2018 at 5:43 pm

    Hmmm…. as the odyssey continued.


  3. magicalmysticalteacher

    June 5, 2018 at 7:02 am

    Are not the thorns the way?

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Rosemary Nissen-Wade

    June 5, 2018 at 3:51 am

    Hmm, now I want the whole novel!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. hypercryptical

    June 4, 2018 at 2:19 pm

    A sad story ZQ
    I guess the realisation that something is better than nothing, or somewhere is better than nowhere, gave him an awkward peace.
    Anna :o]

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Vivian Zems

    June 4, 2018 at 12:06 pm

    Such an interesting read, ZQ.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. thotpurge

    June 4, 2018 at 7:37 am

    That was so real…felt myself rooting for that kid.. wishing he could go away to someplace warm.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. dsnake1

    June 4, 2018 at 3:58 am

    ah Blogger! wondered where my first comment went to.
    a beautiful tale, maybe a tad sad. i wondered about Alonzo, did he really found his freedom, but there are those like him that dared take a chance.
    a wonderful write. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  9. magicofwordsblog

    June 3, 2018 at 9:26 pm

    What a wonderfully written story with beautiful imagery amidst the sadness ~ and a glimpse of freedom & hope.

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Mary

    June 3, 2018 at 8:02 pm

    This is quite a tale!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Rall

    June 3, 2018 at 3:13 pm

    Harrowing tale. Growing up in an orphanage is not ideal I suppose. Although a lot of families are dysfunctional so the snoring Sister Saint Jean might be a better option in certain circumstances.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Julian

    June 3, 2018 at 2:08 pm

    I have to agree with annell4 comment.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Julian

    June 3, 2018 at 2:01 pm

    A deep piece of writing, well done.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. annell4

    June 3, 2018 at 1:06 pm

    Yes, on the one hand no place for a child, but on the other, at least it is some place for a child to be.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Sherry Marr

    June 3, 2018 at 10:57 am

    I can see that boy, with no where to go, knocking to be let back in. Sigh. I love the walls murmuring he has found a way to leave here. Life is hard, for humans.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. mhmp77

    June 3, 2018 at 2:36 am


    The Ghost of Alonzo

    The ghost will still be there to be a partner in crime by extending the confidence of old. Childhood escapades do repeat in adult life!




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