What is the truth?
Is it a story that the collective knows and agrees upon? Is it fabricated to conform to what needs to be believed? Is it, in actuality, something entirely different?
I don’t have the answer to that question and that, unfortunately, is the truth.
There is a prime example of what the truth can and cannot be, and that is the story of the Lilith & Agnes, a boat which plied the length of the Cross River and kept close to the Atlantic shoreline.
In 1938, she vanished in a hurricane which ravaged the Eastern shore.
In 1948, a rogue wave threw her back upon a wooded lot a quarter-mile in from the marina.
I was one of those who went aboard, to see what we could find, if anything.
According to town lore, there was nothing aboard. No sign of the fifteen man crew.
This truth was a comfort to the families who had lost their menfolk.
In actuality, the remains of fourteen men were on that boat. Their bones had been bound together to form a cage, and in that cage lay the wasted body of the fifteenth man, whose name I shall not place here.
Every bone of that cage bore his teeth marks. His own feet he had gnawed off, then his fingers and his hands.
That is a truth which cannot be told.
A pair of truths? A pair of lies? We each view it as we must, and the only truths I see are those which would cut out the hearts of others.
I would have it no other way.
Still, to protect Cross, the boat is on my land, and occasionally, I can hear the ghost of the last man enjoying his meals.
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