The Effigy

Movie still from “The Mummy” (1932) with Boris Karloff and Zita Johann.

I reached to close the blinds in my dining room. Twice I looked at the house across the street. I moved a little to the left, my eyes fixed on the shape. There, in the window, between the blinds’ slats, I spied a distinct silhouette of broad shoulders and a head wrapped in ragged cloth.   A mummy!  An effigy of a mummy hanging from the ceiling! Or was it the twilight’s light and shadows playing tricks on my eyes?

My beau, seeing me with a puzzled look, surveyed the window across the street.

“Yep, it looks like a mummy.” He rubbed his chin. “Maybe it’s her dead husband.”

Life continued. Summer turned to fall. Winter melted into spring. And the effigy dangled in the window.

One late afternoon, I happened to see the neighbor from across the street with the mummy in her window.  She was at the end of her driveway in her leopard robe, white slacks, brown fuzzy slippers, and dark sunglasses. I called to her and walked over. After some general pleasantries, I asked about the hanging effigy in her window.

“Oh, that!” she whispered. She turned a pasty-white, bony hand towards her window. “It’s a North African fertility statue. It’s bolted to a post on the floor.”

And so, my inquisitiveness was satisfied. There was no dead, mummified husband hanging from the ceiling.

Or so she said.

©2017 Susan Marie Molloy and all works in between.

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