always had the best masks when I was small because my uncle made them.
At 16 he was obsessed with mold-making, magic, hypnotizing his niece
and he made wonderful, scary ugly masks which was good, because
at Hallow'een I could never be a fairy princess or snow white
like Debbie Briggs.
My grandmother, after all, made me wear a snowsuit under my costume every year... even when it made me sweat. So I was a monster by default. It just would have been more hideous if I had tried to be Athena, Goddess of wisdom and warriors (my first choice) over the padding.
Every year I was a monster with three rows of eyes... expensive wax grapes from the wax fruit bowl (who came up with that?). My uncle made the masks by pouring rubber on the plaster cast of poor Mr. Kennedy who died under mysterious circumstances in Dalewood Park.
Kennedy made that cast. She sculpted and swore
and smoked cigars and didn't
have children in the 1920 (and the 1930s and
the 1940s) and now her ghost haunts this house. It's weird.
Sometimes I think I see her hands on the bust, my
uncle’s over top, unafraid, pouring the hot rubber placing the grapes
making hideous facial angles made from foam.
Every year the same kind of mask
Underneath, the snow suit.
Under that – Athena.