Black Hole

by Vicki Nunn

I finally found the black hole. I’d suspected its existence but hadn’t been able to spot it before then. I’m referring to the black hole in JD’s bedroom. That’s the place into which most of the eleven year old’s socks, underpants, pens and rulers had been disappearing during the previous eighteen months.

Once we pulled out all of the junk from the storage space beneath his bed and from his cupboard, the vortex vanished and all of the  missing items suddenly re-emerged.

Mind you, there were also a number of other items that joined the returning throng as well. We discovered the two lost dictionaries that JD swore at the time had been stolen at school.

There were eight maroon hats in various stages of cleanliness and disrepair.

One item we unearthed was a very dead lunchbag, which partially explained the rather distinct odour in his bedroom, and another article was a container of watermelon pieces that had begun to grow its own life-form. The fungi seemed to be trying desperately to get out of the container to meet Mr Dead Lunchbag, so I asked JD to introduce them both to Mr Wheely Bin.

We were unable to identify the remains of another item but I suspect that while it may once have been a piece of food. It was so dried up and shrivelled that it resembled something that belonged in an Egyptian tomb.

The socks and underpants were quite a disturbing collection, all of which I refused to touch with my bare skin. One sock was able to stand up on its own and out of the corner of my eye, I could have sworn that I saw another scuttle under cover.

Those two areas alone yielded five large garbage bags of rubbish!

I deliberated about whether I should place a toxic warning poster on JD’s bedroom door, suggesting that visitors were entering at their own risk. I feared though that it may simply have encouraged JD to attempt to reach an even higher level of filth than he had achieved till that point in time.

I looked forward to more of the same in his teenage years, though I feared that one day I would enter his room only to discover that JD himself had disappeared into his own black hole.