Against Dying by Kaveh Akbar

if the body is just a parable

about the body if breath

is a leash to hold the mind

then staying alive should be

easier than it is most sick

things become dead things

at twenty-four my liver was

already covered in fatty

rot my mother filled a tiny

coffin with picture frames

I spent the year drinking

from test tubes weeping

wherever I went somehow

it happened wellness crept

into me like a roach nibbling

through an eardrum for

a time the half minutes

of fire in my brainstem

made me want to pull out

my spine but even those

have become bearable so

how shall I live now

in the unexpected present

I spent so long in a lover’s

quarrel with my flesh

the peace seems over-

cautious too-polite I say

stop being cold or make

that blue bluer and it does

we speak to each other

in this code where every word

means obey I sit under

a poplar tree with a thermos

of chamomile feeling

useless as an oath against

dying I put a sugar cube

on my tongue and

swallow it like a pill

Have a great day all my darling avidReaders! I know I haven’t released a proper article since last week, my mind’s been kind of all over the place and writing just didn’t come to me. I also don’t want to write just to post weekly and I post something that’s rubbish. I’ve also been busy working on my next book. If you follow me on my socials, you will see I just finished releasing the last chapter of my book “Stranger” on Patreon. I’m now busy with the next one, Idyllic. It’s been very busy over here with work, too.

Maria Roux–The Uniondale Hitchhiker.

Maria Roux ghost

It has been brought to my attention that I have a wealth of urban legends in my own country that I have yet to share with all of you.

The Karoo can be a beautiful place, but for one stretch of road that has intrigued and perturbed many South Africans. If you are a fan of haunted houses, ghosts and other paranormal phenomenon, you may very well already know of Maria Roux–known as the Uniondale Hitchhiker.

Maria Roux

Uniondale Road Hitchhiker

Maria Roux was a lovely young woman who was engaged to a Mr. G.M. Pretorius. Unfortunately, poor Maria would never see her wedding day. While travelling in the car with her fiancé from Graaf Reneit to Riversdal on 12th April 1968, Maria had fallen asleep in the back of the car. While fast asleep, Maria and her fiancé were in a car accident. Her fiancé survived, but Maria was not so fortunate. A year later her fiancé got married and that was when the first sighting of Maria occurred.

Since the late 1960s there have been many sightings of Maria. So much in fact that she became infamized in the movie The Curse of Highway Sheila. All the reports indicate that Maria waits, on the road where she was killed, for passing motorists to give her a lift. When they stop and offer her a lift, thinking she’s a normal hitchhiker, she climbs in. After a few kilometers, they hear a laugh, feel an icy breeze inside the car and then she is gone.

These incidences only occurred for a about 20 years. It seems that upon the death of G.M. Pretorius (in a car accident as it turns out) these appearances stopped almost instantly. It would seem that after so many years of haunting, Maria has finally found peace.

Maria’s story is short, but unnerving as any of her victims can attest. Of the many ghost stories and hauntings few found peace like Maria. It would seem she could only rest soundly once she had seen her fiancé die in the same fashion she had.

I will be investigating some horror stories from my own backyard. Most of these stories still linger in modern day South Africa like the tale of poor Maria Roux.

God bless all of you today, my darling avidReaders.