Five Gods I Worship in a Tiny Shrine Hidden Right at the Top of My Secret Garden

Jan Kaneen

  • The plastic gnome we stole in Scarborough that first sugar-spun summer of seashells and starfish.
  • The emerald bead you found in the tide-line and threaded with ribbon and slipped round my wrist.
  • That button-eyed squirrel, spotted in Oxfam, brought back home because no-one would love it.
  • The driver’s side wingmirror from my company Kia, still scrawled with the word HELP in black felt-tip caps, because it was the only place I’d see what you’d been trying to tell me.
  • The ghost-white feather floating onto my coat sleeve the day your wife laid you to rest, and I lied my goodbyes.

This story won 2nd Prize and was a joint winner of the People’s Prize vote in the October 2021 Monthly Micro Competition.

About the author: Jan Kaneen writes because it helps keep her something like sane. She’s been published all over the shop on line and in print and her memoir-in-flash The Naming of Bones is published by Retreat West and available at: