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The Postbox

written by: Alexa Cleasby



There is a postbox they forgot.

A thin red slither built into our garden wall.

Sometimes when we played we’d hear the footsteps on the pavement. Then a creak, rustle, and snap as envelopes were pushed inside. We would hear them drop. We pretended we were protecting secrets. We patrolled and we guarded. Until Mum called us in for tea.

There is a postbox they forgot.

No one, but us heard it change as it filled. Envelope upon envelope, secret upon secret. And we never told.

Soon everyone forgot. Nothing new arrived and still we never told.

Soon even we forgot. Life beyond our garden sprawled in front of us. The hinges swelled and rusted. Red paint peeled, leaves and bramble twisted up and grew around it, forcing their way, pushing stone gently apart with the patience of plants.

There is a postbox they forgot.

But we were busy living bigger lives, we were busy learning. Our minds grew too full for garden games. Until the stone finally gave in, sighing as it cracked. Relieved to let decay win.

There is a postbox they forgot.

The gnarled metal has softened and stones lie at its feet cradled in ivy. The wind whips around, a nosy spectator. It creeps in and wrenches out.

The letters spill white far across the grass like a hand outstretched. They reach like they’re tasting the air. They scatter like they’ll never be trapped again.

There is a postbox they forgot.

We gathered the secrets, summons, adverts and bills. And it was too much. Too much has passed between us. Too much has happened here. We held each other crying stupidly. We cried for all that people had lost. We cried for missed invitations, for funerals, for feuds, for bank statements, for love letters, wasted marketing, for gossip, dark secrets and memories. We cried for ourselves. We cried until we were laughing and back again.

But most of all we cried with discovery and that rare awareness of the present as time rushed by all around. A moment captured fresh and an overwhelming realisation of the souls in our bodies and the beauty in our lives.

Alexa Cleasby

Alexa Cleasby

Writer of short stories, strange tales, poetry and jumbled up words.
Squeezing my first love into every corner of life.
Alexa Cleasby

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