Dear Nonexistent Children

Dear Nonexistent Children

Brandi Wells


You are so lucky you do not exist. If you did, I would raise you as such:

You would be identical twins and live in the basement, a well lit place full of board games, crossword puzzles, and boxes of varied sizes for you to hide in, pretending you are astronauts and superheroes and zoo animals. Only one of you would be allowed to leave at a time. You would be the same person.

If one of you bruised your knee I would bruise the other’s knee. If you cried when I bruised your knee I would enlarge the bruises until your crying sounded identical. If one of your arms fell off like banana rot, I would rot the other’s arm, coating it in bacteria and fungi. During the rotting process neither of you could bathe, but you could look at pictures of waterfalls and rain and watermelon juice.


You would rotate which days you attended school and explain the day’s lessons to the other. You could select only one school friend, because having multiple friends would be confusing. You would tell this friend that you had a disease that ensured forgetfulness.

If one of you disliked a certain food, neither of you could consume it. If one of you could run fast and the other could not, then neither of you would be allowed to run. I would buy you ill-fitting dress shoes and you would wear them every day to guarantee there would be no running.

You would never question this arrangement. I would make sure you knew everyone has two bodies. You would never speak of one another because if you did, you wouldn’t be allowed to speak. I would damage your vocal cords equally.


If one of you liked math and the other preferred history, you would learn a trade. You would be a mechanic or a welder or an assembly-line worker. If one of you was not good with their hands and the other was, you would be a cashier at a department store. If one of you was good with people and the other was not, you would be work in a cubicle, keying data into a spreadsheet.

I would introduce you to a woman whose hair is styled like my hair, whose fingers are short like my fingers and whose eyes are set shallow like my eyes. You would both love this woman and I would kill one of you, whoever has become my least favorite.

Then, I would wish you GOOD LUCK and we would never speak again.


All rights reserved to Brandi Wells.

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