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Voodoo dolls: The 5 stages of cursed grief
Thursday, 08 September 2016 09:45
Special to the Daily Planet


A few months ago, my friend Kane and I were sent voodoo dolls from another friend who visited New Orleans. The dolls were beautiful in their hideousness. 

Both were elegantly dressed in silk brocade fabric. The head was very heavy and decorated with black and white tribal markings reminiscent of the witch doctor in Scooby Doo. 

I was very excited and took my new friend home that night and laid it on my nightstand. 

It wasn’t until I’d been up for a while the next morning, busying myself with getting ready ready for work, that my Mommy Kitty Sense started going off. I couldn’t put my finger on it, but an uneasiness was creeping up on me. “Lola!” 

My little orange tabby always comes when I call her. But she didn’t. I called again. And then again. By this time, I was walking around the house and calling out a bit frantically. I got quiet and stood stock still, straining to hear any noise. 

And then I heard it. A faint scratching. And it was coming from behind my laundry room wall! I pulled out the washing machine and pried open the access panel revealing a confused kitty that was awfully happy to see me and get out of her prison. She was healthy and safe and that should’ve been all that mattered. 

But I wanted to know the how and why. Lola had never shown any interest in getting the access panel open and I don’t think she even knew it was there. I had to tear the opening wider just to get her out. 

That evening, I went to dinner and when I got back to my car, the passenger side back seat was completely folded down. An icy shiver ran down my spine. You have to disengage the lever from inside the trunk and use quite a bit of force to get the seat to lay down somewhat. But this was completely flat. 

That’s when I knew I was cursed.

I texted Kane and asked him if he’d had anything weird happen since he got his voodoo doll. Turns out, he had had a nasty freak accident at work resulting in a bruised kidney, bruised spleen and fractured ribs! And his fish died. But not his favorite fish. And his friendly cat that loves people had been hiding underneath his bed. He had not made the mental leap to a cursed voodoo doll yet.

Which brings me to the Stages of Cursed Grief:

1 - “I am so pissed off, I don’t even know where to begin!”

2 - “I will rain Hell Fire down on you, you sneaky so and so!”

3 - And then there’s the spell....

4 - Bind it and throw it in the river.

5 - Live happily ever after knowing you have just wrecked someone else’s wretched life that tried to wreck yours first.

I know in my heart that the friend who sent us those cursed voodoo dolls truly meant to send us a unique trinket. He would never in a million years have caused something terrible to be visited on us. I believe that the person who cursed the dolls was playing a sick joke on the drunk tourist.  And since he couldn’t remember the one voodoo shop in a thousand where he’d bought it, I couldn’t mail the actual dolls back. 

It was Sunday, exactly three days since I’d received my doll. I started scouting locations private enough for what I needed to do. It was as if the voodoo doll knew exactly what I was up to. I could feel its resistance with each mile I drove.  

I finally found the perfect location and stopped the car. I grabbed the doll and exited in the pouring rain. I pulled the pin out of its body to release its hold on me and read off the spell I’d written to send that nasty mess back to the person who sent it.

And then I pitched that thing right in the Swannanoa River. It landed with a loud plop and I watched it bob away quickly. 

And that was the end of that. 

Eventually, Kane and I were able to hook up a couple of months later one night around midnight. He hates anything having to do with magic, but I wasn’t about to go to the river by myself. Humans are scary. I promised it would be quick and painless.

It was raining and foggy but we left the lights on and exited the car. We walked to the sandy area ahead and descended a couple of steps, bringing us closer to the water’s edge. I grasped the voodoo doll firmly in my hand and pulled the pins out with the other. I held the doll up and repeated the same words as with my doll and pitched everything into the swift currents of the river. 

Everything has returned to normal and Kane is much more open to what I do.


 Shelley Wright, an Asheville native, is a paranormal investigator. She owns and runs Nevermore Mystical Arts shop and works at Wright’s Coin Shop, both in Asheville. Wright also is a weekly participant in the “Speaking of Strange” radio show from 9 p.m. to midnight on most Saturdays on Asheville’s WWNC-AM (570).




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